The Pakistani Irrigation system is the oldest in the world. As we are an agrarian country, the crops rely heavily on water. Because of mismanagement, there is an economic loss that has resulted in a decrease in agricultural yield. To make things better, Punjab Irrigation Department (P.I. D) has launched an international irrigation system in collaboration with Steelman Pvt Limited (A REDtone Group Company). This is a much-needed initiative to upgrade agricultural methods, which will cause increased agricultural production.
Chief Engineer, Irrigation Research Zone Lahore, Rashid Aziz, and Director Irrigation, Research Institute (IRI), Ghulam Zakir Hassan Sial, were present at the site. They observed the laying of the new canal lining material.
Geosynthetic Cementitious Composite Mat (GCCM) is developed by Concrete Canvas UK. It is introduced by Steelman Pvt Limited in Pakistan, which is a specialized Electro-Mechanical firm (part of the REDtone Group of Companies). Steelman and Punjab Irrigation Department at Field Research Station, Babakwal carried out a trial to check its effectiveness.
Chief Engineer Rashid Aziz said, “The material looks great. The main factor observed so far is its easy and fast laying method. With the inception of this technique, lining project targets can be achieved ahead of time along with saving water. Earlier I was a little suspicious about its joints, but the way they are being treated with a thermal welding machine is quite satisfactory. However, we will further observe the impact of varying degrees of temperature on these joints as well.”
Director (IRI) Ghulam Zakir Hassan Sial said, “Pakistan has one of the largest irrigation networks in the world. However, controlling seepage through canals remains a serious concern for our country. The Irrigation Research Institute of Lahore was set up in 1924 and it has been engaged in conducting research studies on various lining materials to counter seepage loss through canals. Concrete Canvas will be declared as effective and sound for use. Subsequently, after processing it through various semi-field conditions, it will be a great breakthrough as we get past the trial stage.”
Deputy General Manager Steelman Pvt. Ltd. Ehtisham Habib, explained the technology used, “The proposed new lining technology is unique and innovative as Concrete Canvas is one of those systems that are durable, cost-effective, time-saving and eco-friendly as compared to the traditional method being used locally. I am sure that the trial will be a success and we will achieve great results.”