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Land reclamation via vertical drainage wells


Title Land reclamation via vertical drainage wells
Category of tools Collector-drainage system
Field of application

• Use of water resources
• Use of land resources

Usability of practice for adaptation to climate change Moderate
Implemented by Ministry of Reclamation and Water Management of the Republic of Kazakhstan
Used by

Country: Kazakhstan

Province: South Kazakhstan Region

District: Maktaaral District

Local specifics

• Upstream (Ferghana) and midstream (Syr Darya) of the Syr Darya River
• Ebb occurrence of highly mineralized ground water

Practice usage period

Start date: 01.01.1965

End date: 31.12.1975

Problem solved through this practice

Deterioration of reclamation situation: rising of ground water, land salination

Tools used in the practice

Technique and technology of land reclamation via a system of vertical drainage wells (VDW)

Description of the practice and its results


A VDW system set up. Prior to its installation, the area was drained via a horizontal open-type drain-age network ineffective as to reducing the mass of salinized land.

Comprehensive VDW efforts significantly enhanced drainage.

However, currently due to the absence of a single organization responsible for VDW operation, maintenance and repair, the VDW systems recon-structed under World Bank and Asian Development Bank projects do not perform as effectively as ini-tially.


Financial and economic:
Increased cotton yields (from 10-15 up to 30-35 dt/ha).

Successful response to land salination in 3 districts: ground water table steadily kept at 2-3 m depth leading to a sharp contraction of salinized land area.

Lessons learnt and recommendations made

Lessons learnt:

In due time, the model proved useful and timely, as the country urgently needed to increase its cotton yields. The practice demonstrated high efficiency of VDW in combatting land salination.


1. Establish a special VDW System Maintenance and Operation Department;
2. Build personnel capacity:
• Continual training of personnel in the Department and Provincial Hydrogeological and Land Reclamation Expedition;
• Drafting and distribution of training materi-als.

Source of practice

Domestic tools (outcomes of research by domestic R&D organizations)

Funding source Ministry of Reclamation and Water Management of the USSR
Information sources

Reshetkina N.M. et al. “Vertical Drainage”, Moscow: Kolos, 1978. – 319 p.

Form submission date 26.03.2018
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