|Official Website of Department of Irrigation & Drainage Sabah|
Highland crops at Kundasang
The development of irrigation and drainage systems is the most important factor in the achievement of the objectives of the State Agricultural Policy, which is to increase the total production in agriculture to a maximum level. Prior to 1970, agriculture using irrigation methods was more associated with paddy cultivation, but following that, the Department also developed irrigation in highlands for high value crops while simultaneously conducting research on the provision of irrigation infrastructure. In the coming Twelve Malaysia Plan, the Department will work with other related government departments and agencies, in an effort to coordinate the development plans for irrigation infrastructure.
To achieve the State Agricultural Policy to produce 60% of rice in 2025, the rate of irrigation development needs to be intensified. This can be done in the following ways: -
Development of irrigation and drainage infrastructure through the implementation of several new projects.
Enhance and expand irrigation infrastructure in potential identified areas surrounding existing schemes.
The use of all irrigation and drainage facilities provided in existing rice cultivation areas.
Improved integrated irrigation management practices.
Encourage and support the efforts to modernize paddy cultivation development, from the traditional method to a more profitable and commercially viable venture.
Provide technical assistance in the development of infrastructure in the diversification of crops, from paddy to other crops that can generate profits in identified areas not for paddy.
To ensure sustainable water supply for irrigation, development works for irrigation and drainage schemes will be implemented based on environmental conditions taking into account all possible adverse environmental impacts resulting from irrigation works.
With the continuous development of irrigation and drainage infrastructure by the Department, paddy fields in Sabah have increased from 1,600 ha in 1967 to 15,000 ha in 1999, and paddy production has increased from about one tonne per hectare to about- about 4 tonnes per hectare.
Currently, the Department has developed more than 80 irrigation schemes. Among the largest are located in the following areas:
Irrigation headworks at Membakut
Irrigation control structure at Bongawan