||Qinghai Rural Water Resources Management Project
||China, People's Republic of
|Project Type / Modality of Assistance
|Source of Funding / Amount
|Loan 2738-PRC: Qinghai Rural Water Resources Management Project|
|Ordinary capital resources
||Environmentally sustainable growth
Inclusive economic growth
|Drivers of Change
||Governance and capacity development
|Sector / Subsector
Agriculture, natural resources and rural development
- Agricultural production
- Rural water policy, institutional and capacity development
|Gender Equity and Mainstreaming
|| Effective gender mainstreaming
||The proposed Project will help to (i) convert the existing lift irrigation schemes to gravity irrigation by making use of the two existing reservoirs in the area; and (ii) improve agricultural extension services and institutional capacity, and empower farmer associations for irrigated agricultural service and management. The Project will increase water-use efficiency and is in line with ADB's water policy in improving and expanding the delivery of water services, fostering water conservation and increasing system efficiency.
|Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy
Reducing poverty and increasing rural incomes remain daunting challenges in the PRC though national economic growth has been more than 9% annually during the past two decades. Agriculture remains an important sector in Qinghai where irrigation water management is essential to sustain agriculture throughout the year. Meeting water needs and improving irrigation water management has become the major priority of agriculture development in this province.
There is considerable potential to increase irrigation water use efficiency and agricultural productivity by improving irrigation management and agronomic practices, which would allow farmers to grow cash crops in addition to subsistence crops, and thus increase their incomes.
||Increased farmers' income and reduced poverty in the counties of Hualong, Jianzha, and Xunhua in Qinghai Province
|Description of Outcome
||Increased agricultural productivity and irrigation water use efficiency in the project area
|Progress Toward Outcome
||The progress on main canals by the water resources department was 49% in terms of total capital investment, and the progress on branch canals and on-farm irrigation facility by the land resources department was 55%
|Description of Project Outputs
Participatory irrigation management
Improved project management
Climate-resilient irrigation infrastructure, including conversion of the existing lift irrigation schemes to gravity irrigation using two existing reservoirs in the area
Strengthened agricultural service support
|Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)
For PIM intervention: extensive survey and consultation has been done; and candidates for model water user associations (WUAs) were selected. One WUA was established in January 2014 for the Gandujie area and has started its operation after the partial operation of Gongboxia north irrigation scheme. The LC revisited the Gandujie WUA in 2015 to review the actual operation status and provided assistance to address the practical issues and challenges encountered. It is planned that another 6-8 model WUAs will be established based on the experiences in the first WUA with the LC support.
For improved project management: project implementation capacity of provincial and county PMOs were strengthened through training on procurement, disbursement, participatory irrigation management, internal monitoring and reporting, and project management information system. A training workshop on the management of water conservancy project was organized by the LC in Hehai University for the QPPMO and CPMOs staff.
For irrigation infrastructure: the progress on main canal by the water resources department was 49% in terms of total capital investment, and the progress on branch canals and on-farm irrigatio facility by the land resources department was 55%
For strengthened agricultural services support: training on improving agronomic practices and the productivity of staple grain crops, and diversifying into higher-value crops were delivered by local government, TA consultant, and the LC. Eight pilot sites were selected by the LC for crop and livestock farming after field survey and consultation. Draft training materials on agricultural technologies, soil improvement, and extension services were prepared by the LC.
||The proposed project area is in the counties of Jiaza, Hualong, and Xunhua in the eastern part of Qinghai province
|Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects|
During project preparation, a domestic environmental impact assessment report and a summary initial environmental examination report (including an environmental management plan) were prepared following the PRC regulatory framework, and ADB's safeguard requirements. A due diligence assessment of safety and environmental management for the two existing dams of Gongboxia and Lijiaxia shows that the operators comply with national regulations and apply adequate environmental management procedures acceptable to ADB.
The project is expected to achieve significant environmental benefits in the project area, including (i) reduced energy use; (ii) improved water resources management; and (iii) increased vegetation coverage. The main possible adverse environmental impacts and risks include (i) impacts associated with the construction of the canals, notably safety risks during tunnel construction and disposal of large volumes of spoils; and (ii) potentially, increased usage of agrochemicals during operation. It is expected that all impacts will be prevented or minimized to an acceptable level through implementation of the environmental management plan and monitoring program.
||The project will involve 110.8 ha of permanent land acquisition, of which 28 ha (25%) is cultivated land, with impacts spread over 68 villages. The impacts on villages are small because about 75% of the land acquired is wasteland. The 28 ha of farmland acquired affects 6,776 persons, and the average degree of loss is about 6%. In addition, 16 households with 101 persons will need to be relocated. The Qinghai Provincial Water Resources Department has prepared two resettlement plans. All affected people will be project beneficiaries, as they will receive improved irrigation as well as resettlement entitlements to offset their losses. As compensation, affected households can choose between replacement of irrigated land or cash compensation. A due diligence assessment for the associated Gongboxia and Lijiaxia reservoirs found no outstanding resettlement issues.
||The project will benefit almost exclusively poor and near-poor ethnic minority households, improving their economic status and livelihoods without negatively impacting their social security status. The three main ethnic groups in the project counties Hui, Salar, and Tibetan have inhabited this area for more than 700 years. They account for 96% of the beneficiaries of the project. There have been no recorded social conflicts in the project area based on ethnicity. There seem to be few, if any, distinct customs related to agriculture; but traditional decision-making structures will be integrated into the project activities in the villages. Four ethnic minority development plans have been prepared to mainstream pro-minority activities and measures into the project and safeguard the interests of ethnic minorities.
|Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation|
|During Project Design
||Consultations were held with government agencies, including the Ministry of Finance (MOF); Ministry of Water Resources; National Development and Reform Commission; Qinghai Provincial Development and Reform Commission (QPDRC); and the provincial departments of agriculture and livestock, civil affairs, environmental protection, finance, land and resources administration, and water resources. Several meetings were held with municipality and county governments as well as local communities, including ethnic minority groups. The poverty and social assessment, environmental impact assessment (EIA), and preparation of ethnic minority development plans (EMDPs) and resettlement plans undertook participatory processes to solicit input from all concerned stakeholders, including farmers. More than six consultation and training workshops were conducted during PPTA implementation.
|During Project Implementation
||Public consultation and participation of the IAs, ethnic minority groups, farmer households, local government agencies, and other stakeholders, which have been the key elements of the project formulation and design, will continue during project implementation. Consultation with stakeholders will continue through a series of workshops and meetings planned throughout the project period. Moreover, farmers and farmer associations will receive intensive training on group mobilization, organization, and marketing management skills to enhance their capacities to participate and contribute to the project design and implementation. Similarly, government officials from the provincial, municipal, and county levels will receive support through staff training, workshops, and study tours to strengthen their project management capacity. Close coordination between government agencies, farmer associations, and farmers will be maintained as part of the regular PPMS and ADB review processes, with emphasis on social dimensions, poverty, and gender. The PPMS will closely monitor any negative impacts emanating from the Project, including involuntary resettlement and/or exclusion of indigenous peoples. As part of the EMP, regular monitoring and public consultations will also be held.
||The Project will require a total of 60 person-months (pm) of international consulting services and 190 pm of national consulting services to (i) support project implementation and provide capacity development of the EA and IAs (25 pm of international and 70 pm of national consulting services), (ii) support the WUAs in the implementation of the PIM (20 pm of international and 60 pm on national consulting services), and (iii) support the implementation of the irrigated agricultural support (15 pm of international and 60 pm of national consultants). These consulting requirements will be further reviewed with the EA to streamline their composition, operation, and contract packaging. Consultants will be recruited in accordance with ADB's Guidelines on the Use of Consultants (2007, as amended from time to time). Detailed design and engineering and construction supervision, financed with the Government's counterpart funds, will be carried out by qualified local design institutes recruited by the EA or the IAs.
||All procurement of goods and works to be financed under the ADB loan will be carried out in accordance with ADB's Procurement Guidelines (2007, as amended from time to time). Contracts for goods estimated to exceed $1 million and contracts for works estimated to exceed $10 million will be procured using international competitive bidding (ICB) procedures. Contracts for goods and works estimated to cost less than the above ICB values but more than $100,000 will be procured through national competitive bidding procedures in accordance with the PRC Tendering and Bidding Law (1999), subject to modifications agreed with ADB. Contracts for goods and works estimated to cost $100,000 or less will be procured using shopping procedures. Small on-farm civil works contracts of $100,000 or less may be carried out through community participation to ensure sustainability and achieve the Project's social objectives. The relevant sections of ADB's Anticorruption Policy (1998, as amended to date) will be included in all procurement documents and contracts.