of Iran’s landmass is considered a desert-land devoid of forests and green
pastures. Such a harsh environmental condition ancient Iranian innovated
amazing techniques and knowledge for supplying water, which are recently called
indigenous knowledge. Rain water and runoff harvesting techniques are often
applied to increase the water recharge and consequently productivity in arid
regions. The sizes of runoff harvesting structures are varying form micro to
macro landscape. Qanat, Khooshab, Bandsar and Degar are the most famous
indigenous techniques of water resources management in Iran. We tried to
introduce two methods (Bandsar and Khooshab), their classification and
structure as well as benefits. Bandsar is a kind of flood farming structure
ground water recharge prevailed in Khorasan province of eastern Iran. Depending
on rainfall, land topography and geomorphology of area, different types have
been established to use floods and agricultural activities. Their area is about
0.5 to 5 ha in alluvial fans and piedmont plain. Its structure consists of plots, basin and levee
along contour lines and dry rivers. The upland generated runoff is stored in
the basin to infiltrate. Moreover, the fine trapped sediment in Bandsar as a
fertile material cause to improve sandy soils. Khooshab is another traditional
method used in southeast of Iran (Sistan va Baluchistan). It is a wall
structures built across or along the dry river to catch the summer Monson floods water and
cultivation as well as combat to wind erosion. Their areas are about 1 - 10 ha
and crops such as wheat, maize and barely are produced through them. Flood plains and piedmont are the best location for
Khooshabs which caused aquifer recharging. This work tries to explain about
environmental condition affect the outcomes of mentioned techniques and their side effects on
decreasing soil erosion, flooding and desertification as well as productivity
increasing in some parts of Iran. Our findings revealed that the efficiency of traditional
knowledge is closely integrated with environment conditions and socio-economic
situation of rural community such as participatory. However, they can act as a
good alterative in conjunction of new technological methods.
Cite this paper
Samani, A. , Khalighi, S. , Arabkhedri, M. and Farzadmehr, J. (2014) Indigenous Knowledge and Techniques of Runoff Harvesting (Bandsar and Khooshab) in Arid and Semi Arid Regions of Iran. Journal of Water Resource and Protection, 6, 784-792. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2014.68074.
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