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Gypsum Technology: A Cost-Effective Strategy to Recoup Alkali Soils on a Sustainable Basis

In India, nearly 6.73 million ha of land has been classified as salt-affected, with alkali and saline soils accounting for 3.70 and 2.96 million ha, respectively, threatening the farming community's livelihood security. Reclamation of salt-affected soil is a priority in current policies in India in order to meet the demands of a growing population for food, feed, fiber and bioenergy. For reclaiming alkali soils and making them productive, it is necessary to remove or replace exchangeable sodium (Na+) on soil colloids with divalent cation calcium (Ca2+). Among the various strategies tested, gypsum technology proved to be a cost-effective method for reclaiming alkali soils on a long-term basis.