Event Date(s): 05/03/2009
The professorial inaugural lecture of Professor Edwin Ekwue entitled “The Convergence of Engineering, Agriculture and the Environment will take place on Thursday 5th March, 2009 at 5:30 p.m. It will be held in Engineering Room 101.
Methods available for boosting agricultural production in the Caribbean region will be reviewed emphasising the supply of more irrigation infrastructure and tractors for large-scale food production. Water available for irrigation in Trinidad is limited prompting research on the best use of limited water allocated for irrigation. The wide use of tractors results in environmental problems principally soil compaction and compressibility. This inaugural lecture will describe research carried out in the two areas: irrigation and the minimization of soil compaction. Wetland soils in Trinidad, including those from Nariva Swamp, which suffer from the detrimental effect of tractorisation was studied. The major finding is that while increased use of tractors could increase agricultural production on wetland soils in Trinidad; this will cause large compression and compaction. Rice is well adapted to these high levels of soil compaction and compression, but since it requires irrigation during the dry season, this limits the water required to maintain the swamps. Large scale production of rice is not recommended in Nariva swamp and other wetland soils. Rather, a land zoning policy that allows for the cultivation of vegetables and carrying out of other farming activities in selected parts of the wetlands is preferred. Engineering, agriculture and the environment will be emphasised in the lecture.
Faculty of Engineering