To define what an ecosystem-sustainable "in situ (Localized) Irrigation System" is, it is important to understand what it is not or what it should not be. For wet tropical ecosystems, like the Philippines, an ecosystem-sustainable "in situ (Localized) Irrigation System" will:
- Integrate the principles that ensure the stability and sustainability of the tropical rainforest ecosystem
- Focus on rainwater harvesting (RWH), treatment and storage; conservation, wastewater-treatment and recycling
- Address the issues associated with "conventional irrigation system"
- Avoid drawing water from underground reservoirs; instead will integrate groundwater re-charge as a foundation to help build a healthy ecosystem that would be ready to cope with seasonal changes, climate change, global warming as well as the impact of El Niño and La Niña.
- Integrate micro-irrigation technologies but it is not synonymous nor completely dependent on micro-irrigation systems
An ecosystem-sustainable "in situ (Localized) Irrigation System" will address the question: How can ALL the excess rainwater during the rainy season be harvested, treated, and stored for use during the dry season -- for human consumption, farm production, animal husbandry, and, aquaculture?
In wet tropical countries like the Philippines, with an alternating long dry season and rainy season, universal implementation of an ecosystem-sustainable "in situ (Localized) Irrigation System" will significantly mitigate the disastrous impact of flash-floods common during the rainy season, especially during a typhoon or during severe and prolonged duration La Niña; was well as, eliminate drought during the dry season or even during the advent of severe and prolonged duration El Niño.