Checklist items
The checklist items represent the basic set of content matters to be presented in the Gateway report. They should be referred to before and during the work of compilation. It is left to the composer of the report to re-arrange the flow of information according to individual needs.

Checklist items > Home


1. Overview (Socio-economy, Geography, Climate)
2. Land resources
3. Water resources
4. Plant nutrient resources
5. Hot spots (Critical issues)
6. Bright spots (Responsive measures)
7. Challenges and view points
8. Related Internet sites

1. Overview

1.1 Geography and administrative units
1.2 Socio-economic features
1.3 Climate

1.1 Geography and administrative units

(It is at the discretion of the person compiling the report to make appropriate links to already existing internet sites in order to avoid redundancy of internet-based information on land, water, and plant nutrition. This principle applies to all the following sections)

• Geographical location (description, localization map)
• Administrative units (regions, countries, capital cities, provinces, other administrative units and areas). Include the name and the area of the different administrative units in the country.

[Map 1.1.1: e.g. Outline Map]

[Map 1.1.2: e.g. Administrative Map]

1.2 Socio-economic features

• Population (population statistics: size, density, %rural and urban population, population growth rate, major employment sectors, per capita income and per capita arable land).
• Economy (brief description of the main economic sectors of the country).
• The role of agriculture in the country's economy (trends in the role of agriculture in the economy, contribution to GDP and employment, history and institutional arrangements of the agricultural sector, information on infrastructure, education, health, agriculture, transport and communication).
• Major food crops and cash crops and trends in production
• Food security (major food source, present and future food demand, methods to achieve this _ cropping intensity, crop diversification)
• Crop diversification (crop diversification programmes, results)

[Chart 1.2.1: e.g. Population Growth Rate]

[Chart 1.2.2: e.g. Employment Rate]

1.3 Climate

• Climate description (general climate type; length of growing period). The growing period is the period of the year when both moisture and temperature conditions are suitable for crop production (FAO).
• Climatic data (humidity range, temperature data, mean annual rainfall, monsoons and average seasonal rainfall, rainfall distribution pattern) preferably presented in maps.

[Map 1.3.1: e.g. Distribution of Annual Rainfall]

2. Land resources

2.1 Physiography
2.2 Soils
2.3 Agroecological systems
2.4 Wetlands, mangroves and inland valley bottoms
2.5 Inundation Land Types
2.6 Natural hazards
2.7 Land cover
2.8 Land use
2.9 Land use change
2.10 Land Productivity
2.11 Environmental Impact of land uses

2.1 Physiography

• Geomorphology
• Physiographic units (definition of physiographic units; map and area covered by physiographic units)

[Table 2.1.1: e.g. Physiographic regions and subregions]

[Map 2.1.1: e.g. Main physical regions]

2.2 Soils

• Soil types and distribution (soil map according to FAO classification, wherever available; area and proportions occupied by general soil types)

• Soil Map legend according to FAO Classification (see Annex 2 of the Guideline and Report Profile) whenever available. Countries that are yet to convert their local soil classification data into the FAO standard classification can present their own soil classification, with a full description and clear definition of the method and systems used to classify the soils.

[Map 2.2.1: e.g. Soil associations]

[Table 2.2.1: e.g. Soil associations]

2.3 Agroecological systems

• Agroecological zones (definition of AEZ, AEZ map): Agro-ecological Zones are land resource mapping units, defined in terms of climate, landform and soils, and/or land cover, and having a specific range of potentials and constraints for land use (FAO).
• Land capability classes (definition of LCC, % cover)
• Land suitability for major crop types (definition of land suitability, land suitability maps) (See Annex 3 of the Guideline and Report Profile).

[Table 2.3.1: e.g. Suitability class and areas of selected crops]

[Map 2.3.1: e.g. Agroecological map]

2.4 Wetlands, mangroves and inland valley bottoms

• Location; size of wetlands, mangrove areas or inland valley bottoms; size of catchment area
• Present use (bio-diversity, agriculture, water treatment and use, fuel wood, building material, tourism, pasture, fishing, etc. etc.)
• Importance for the environment versus agriculture
• Role of the areas in the society (food security, etc.)
• Types of soil (organic, mineral, etc.)
• Topography (slopes)
• Hydrological situation (waterlogged, dry in part of the year, violence of flooding, water availability and quality over time and place, etc)
• Natural vegetation
• Pollution

If used for agriculture:

• Type of management (traditional, fully equipped or controlled, etc)
• When first cultivated
• Cultivated all year round or only part of the year
• Main crops grown per season
• Who are the main cultivators
• If irrigation or drainage equipment is present, what type, indication of costs, etc.
• Changes noticed over the years (drying up, waterlogging, decrease or increase in fertility, etc.)
• Changing role over the years (positive or negative from different perspectives, such as social, economic, agricultural, bio-diversity)

2.5 Inundation Land Types

• This section is relevant only if the country has land that is seasonally inundated and regularly used for arable agriculture. Inundation land types (definition of inundation land types; inundation map, area and percentage cover of inundation land types)
• Inundation land types and cropping patterns

2.6 Natural hazards

• Incidence of fire, drought, floods, cyclones, type, location, frequency, damage to food crops, control methods adopted and their effectiveness.

2.7 Land cover

• Definition of land cover, land cover map and area occupied by different land cover types
• (Indicate classification scheme used)
• Trends in land cover (the period over which the trend has occurred should be specified)

2.8 Land use

• Definition of land use, land use map and area occuped by different land use types
• (Indicate classification used)
• Land use types (LUTs): Uses of land defined in terms of a product, or products, the inputs and operations required to produce these products, and the socio-economic setting in which production is carried out (FAO).

• The following major land use types, (and subtypes) are recognized:
- Cropland: land used for cultivation of crops, including fallow (field crops, orchards)
- Annual field cropping: land under temporary/annual crops harvested within one year (e.g. maize, rice, wheat and vegetables).
- Cropping intensity (Defined as number of times crops cultivated per year on a piece of land: i.e. single, double and triple crop. Current figures which are significant should be used as much as possible)
- Perennial field cropping:land under perennial crops. Crops harvested more than one year after planting (e.g. sugar cane, banana, sisal, pineapple).
- Tree and shrub cropping: producing several crops (e.g. coffee, tea, grapevines, oil palm, cacao, coconut, apple, pear).
- Grazing land: land used for animal production
- Extensive grazing land: grazing on natural or semi-natural grasslands, grasslands with trees/shrubs (savannah vegetation) or open woodlands (for livestock and wildlife).
- Intensive grazing land: grass production on improved or planted pastures, including cutting for fodder (for livestock production).
- Forest land: land used mainly for wood production and other forest products or for protection.
- Mixed land: mixture of land use types within the same land unit: agroforestry (trees and crops), agro-pastoralism (crops and livestock), agro-silvo-pastoralism (crops, trees and livestock).
- Other land: recreation areas, road sites, construction sites, etc...

• Area percentage of the land use type: for each land use type, the relative area should be assessed as a percentage of the total land use area and displayed in a pie chart.
• Notes to the area under temporary and permanent crops should provide details on area under mixed, monoculture, shifting cultivation, subsistence cultivation, large scale plantation.

[Table 2.8.1: e.g. Land use types]

[Map 2.8.1: e.g. Vegetation and land use]

[Table 2.8.2: e.g. Land types and sizes]

2.9 Land use change

• As land use is dynamic only major changes should be recorded, but the time period over which the estimate was made should be indicated.

• The change with time in the distribution of land by land use type (and/or land cover type), LUT can be represented by one of the following five classes:

-2: area coverage is rapidly decreasing in size, i.e. >2% per year of that specific LUT area
-1: area coverage is decreasing in size, i.e. 0.5-2% per year of the LUT area
0: area coverage remains ± stable as a percentage of the LUT area, i.e. change between -0.5 and +0.5% per year
1: area coverage is increasing in size, i.e. 0-2% per year of the LUT area
2: area coverage is rapidly increasing in size, i.e. > 2% per year of the LUT area

• Land use intensity trends (intensification of agriculture)
• A change in the intensity of land use is expressed through changes in inputs, management, or cropping intensity (number of harvests per year), over approximately the last 10 years. Only changes within the same LUT and on the same area (change of intensity) are to be considered here - not changes from one LUT to another.

-2: A major decrease in land use intensity
-1: A moderate decrease in land use intensity
0: No major changes in inputs, management level, etc.
1: Moderate increase, e.g. switch from no or low external input to some fertilizers/pesticides; switch from manual labour to animal traction
2: Major increase, e.g. from manual labour to mechanization, from low external inputs to high external inputs, major increase in cropping intensity, ...

2.10 Land Productivity

• US$ equivalents for the average production value per hectare per year for each land use type will be used as a relative indicator for productivity, and for estimating trends and regional differences. Figures for cropland will generally be easier to give than for other land uses, but if figures are known for grazing land or forest land, they should be reported as well.
• Trends in use of major inputs: The production value for each LUT is related to inputs of materials, equipment and labour per hectare per year. Inputs: labour (own and hired), high yielding variety/improved seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, mechanization/hire of ox, cost of irrigation (source of funds for inputs may include income from outside farm, income from livestock)
• The data might be affected by several factors such as shift in government policy; subsistence/commercial farming, illiteracy, etc.
• Productivity trends: Although changes in productivity of crop and livestock LUTs can be attributed to a wide variety of causes, they may also be an indication of soil degradation or, if positive, of effective soil conservation and appropriate land management. Only a rough indication of trends in productivity (change with time in the rate of growth of yield per hectare of important crops or LUTs) is required here, but the period should be specified in view of variation in crop types and farming practices.

2.11 Environmental Impact of land uses

• Agricultural inputs: effects of nutrient imbalance on soil fertility; the application of mixed fertilizer programmes and results.
• Increase over time in degradation of cultivated fields resulting from deficiency of nutrients, lack of balance in the use of N,P and K, or excessive depletion of micro-nutrients.
• Extent of eutrophication of water bodies, soil acidification resulting and contamination of water supply with nitrate resulting from excessive levels of nutrients in the soil.
• Deforestation and land management: Extent of gaseous nitrogen losses and CO2 and methane emissions adding to the total emissions of nitrous oxide, CO2 and methane contributing to problems of climate change.

3. Water resources

3.1 Hydrography
3.2 Irrigation and drainage

3.1 Hydrography

Country information on water resources is available at AQUASTAT. In case there is more information available, describe as follows.

• Water resources: Surface water, groundwater, non-conventional water resources, fossil resources. Major basins (surface and groundwater).
International rivers, agreements...
• Dams, flood control, mobilization of water resources
• Water withdrawal: Water use by sector and trends (trends in agricultural water withdrawal - irrigation and livestock watering - domestic water withdrawal and industrial water withdrawal, other uses,
• future: competition between sectors.
• Wastewater, treatment, reuse (agriculture)

3.2 Irrigation and drainage

• Irrigation potential (method of calculation):
• Place of irrigation/drainage in agriculture, percentage of cropland which is irrigated.
• History of irrigation in the country, trends. Description of the different irrigation systems.
• Irrigation methods (spate, flood recession, full control...).
• Irrigation techniques, breakdown by technique (sprinkler, surface..),. Trends in development of drip and sprinkler irrigation. Breakdown by source of water (river, groundwater..), Waste water reuse in irrigation.
• Irrigated schemes: typology by size and by operating modes: scheme size, number of beneficiaries, management, performances, cropping intensity, fees.
• Cost of irrigation development, cost of O&M, return form irrigation
• Irrigated crops: major crops, areas and production, comparison rainfed/irrigated yields for major crops.
• Institutional environment: Institutions in charge of water resources assessment, development of irrigation: mandates of the main institutions.
• Legislation on water and land status, implementation.
• Trends in water resources and irrigation development, constraints to development, institutional changes, perspectives.

4. Plant nutrient resources

4.1 Plant nutrient use and nutrient balance
4.2 Fertilizer production and costs

4.1 Plant nutrient use and nutrient balance

• Use of plant macro nutrients (forms of plant nutrients used, trends in plant nutrient use, projections in plant nutrient consumption).
Change over time in the content of organic matter, macro-nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium) and micro-nutrients ( zinc, boron, manganese, etc..) in the soil
• Use of mineral fertilizers and micro-nutrients
• Change over time in the amount (in kilograms) of nutrients applied per hectare of arable land and yields per main food crops (also rice types) and cash crops, broken down into three important nutrient components- N, P2O5 and K2O, as well as ( where the necessary crop related information on the usage of nutrients is available) trend in the application of nutrients per hectare of land under important crops and comparison of nutrients used with recommended dosages.
• Change over time in the amount of nutrients applied per hectare of arable land, broken down into main types of nutrients _ fertilisers, manure, sewage sludge, and crop residue resulting from leguminous crops in rotation with other crops.
• Change over time in the use of micro-nutrients such as sulphur, zinc, boron and manganese.
• Extent of nutrient balances (i.e. total withdrawal of nutrients from the soil in the form of nutrient content of the outputs from harvested and fodder crops minus total inputs of nutrients from the application of fertilizers, manure, etc.).

[Table 4.1.1: e.g. Nutrient budgets]

4.2 Fertilizer production and costs

• Types of fertilizer produced locally or imported
• Cost of different fertilizer products (port handling, transport price, storage price)
• Fertiliser subsidies
• Farm budgets in different cropping systems
• Farmer cash flow

[Table 4.2.1: e.g. Farm budgets]

[Table 4.2.2: e.g. Farm budgets - Inland]

5. Hot spots (Critical issues)

5.0 Overview: constraints to sustainable agriculture
5.1 Land-related constraints
5.2 Water-related constraints
5.3 Plant Nutrition-related constraints
5.4 Other constraints

5.0 Overview: constraints to sustainable agriculture

Summary of hotspots.

5.1 Land-related constraints to sustainable agriculture

• Problem soils (definition of problem soils, localization map and area of problem soils).
Human-induced soil degradation (types, extent, localization and effect on crop yield)
• Dystrification: lowering of soil pH through the process of mobilizing or increasing acidic compounds in the soil.
• Compaction and crusting: deterioration of the soil structure due to trampling by cattle or by the weight or frequent use of machinery; and clogging of soil pores causing development of a thin impervious layer. Change over time in percentage area on which compaction or crusting is frequently observed. Change over time in the numbers of agricultural machinery (tractors and harvester-threshers) in use.
• Water erosion (on site effects): loss of topsoil by sheet erosion/surface wash and "terrain deformation" by gully and/or hill erosion or mass movement. Trend in the amount of soil removed by water (in tons per hectare per year). Trend in the land area eroded by water (in hectare per year). Trend in nutrient loss caused by the removal of top soil. Change in the impact of soil nutrient depletion on agricultural productivity.
• Wind erosion (on-site effects): loss of topsoil by wind action and terrain deformation, deflation hollows, hummocks and dunes. Trend in the amount of soil removed by wind in tons per hectare per year. Trend in the land area eroded by wind (in hectare per year).Trend in the area affected by terrain deformation (e.g. gullies and dunes).
• Wind erosion (off-site effects): overblowing of terrain with wind-borne soil particles from distant sources.
• Map of areas affected by different types of soil degradation and trend in incidences
• Agricultural prime land encroachment/land conversion
• Land tenure and land policy
• Conflicts in land use
• Abandonment of land because of salinity or other kinds of degradation
• Resettlement/reclamation and effects of industrialization on land use

5.2 Water-related constraints

• Water erosion (off-site effects): sedimentation of reservoirs or waterways, flooding and pollution of water bodies with eroded sediments. Trend in the incidence of sedimentation levels in rivers or behind dams. Trend in the deposit of sediment in coastal areas.
• Waterlogging: effects of human induced hydromorphism (rising water tables and flooding). Change over time in the extent of area waterlogged (in ha); in the depth of stagnant water (in metre); and in the duration of waterlogging in a year or season.
• Conflicts related to use of water resources
• Inadequate use of water resources

5.3 Plant Nutrition-related constraints to sustainable agriculture

• Fertility decline: net decrease of available nutrients and organic matter in the soil. Trend in soil nutrient depletion.

5.4 Other constraints to sustainable agriculture

• Salinization: net increase of salt content in the topsoil leading to productivity decline.
• Concentration of agrochemicals and pollutants
• Genetic erosion and biodiversity depletion (risk areas)

6. Bright spots (Responsive measures)

6.0 Overview: society's response to ameliorate the situation
6.1 Land-related response indicators
6.2 Water-related response indicators
6.3 Plant Nutrition-related response indicators
6.4 Other response indicators

6.0 Overview: society's response to ameliorate the situation

Summary of bright spots.

6.1 Land-related response indicators

• Available lands for sustainable agricultural development
Sound policies for land allocation and use. Number and proportion of local governments and local communities to which resource management has been devolved.
• Examples and perspectives of sustainability of production systems: sustainable land use systems. Success stories in land use
• Land care programmes. Number and type of farmer organisations or associations promoting soil conservation practices, conservation tillage practices or treating lands suffering from salinity, etc.
• Number of farmers participating in soil conservation and other land improvement technologies promoted by government, e.g. soil conservation structures, soil conservation tillage, use of special inputs (manure, lime) etc.

6.2 Water-related response indicators

• Sustainable use of water resources
• Implementation of schemes to provide adequate drainage and ensuring proper maintenance; improving water management practices, particularly discouraging over-watering; improving maintenance of canals and on-farm ponds and reducing seepage from water courses; undertaking soil reclamation schemes.
Increased cultivation of salt-tolerant crops, or water intensive crops
• Review of policies about the pricing of irrigation water or of energy for water pumping.

6.3 Plant Nutrition-related response indicators

• Sustainable use of nutrients
• Implementation by governements of policies, e.g. price policies, and credit policies to promote balanced applications of nutrients, as well as to ensure that dosages applied are neither too low nor too high.
• Extension efforts, including demonstrations on farmers' fields to promote the required levels of nutrients (farmers' field schools).

6.4 Other response indicators

• Biodiversity/genetic resources conservation and use (e.g. crop diversification)
• New technologies (biotechnology etc.)
• Infrastructures and mechanization/automation (e.g. precision farming)

7. Challenges and viewpoints

The challenges are area specific. They have to be clearly identified especially in land, water and plant nutrition resources management, and strategies developed to meet the challenges (e.g. may include current development with respect to government policies and programmes).

8. References

8.1 References
8.2 Related internet links

8.1 References

• author, title, publisher, year of publication.
• author, title, publisher, year of publication.
• author, title, publisher, year of publication.

8.2 Related internet links

Country in General

• program / website, URL links
• program / website, URL links
• program / website, URL links

Land, Water, and Plant Nutrition

• program / website, URL links
• program / website, URL links
• program / website, URL links


• program / website, URL links
• program / website, URL links
• program / website, URL links

about - acknowledgment - disclaimer - copyright

Last updated: 21 March 2003