Today we have a population of more than 4,000 million people in the world. At least 1,000 million are suffering from faim. In 20 to 30 years time we may be about 8,000 million people. How many will be starving then? Starving people have a low power of resistance against illnesses. Will we be striken by plagues? Or wars and revolutions? Or is it possible to produce sufficient amounts of food on our earth for the human race now and in the future. The answer is simply that it is absolutely necessary, it is not a matter of if it is a must. There are sufficient regions in the world suitable for cultivation, regions which now in many cases are uninhabited and desolate. The main problem is lack of water. There is no doubt whatsoever, that extremely large investments must be made in the future to solve this problem which means irrigation of regions at present barren but with a fairly fertile soil and excellent climatic conditions all year round with the exception of the drought.
Peru is a country of extremes both in terms of climate and geography. It consists of three completely different regions: the arid desert along the Pacific Ocean "la Costa", the mounta in range of the Andes "La sterra" with peaks up to 7, 000 m and in the East a vast area of dense humid jungle with large rivers forming the upper Amazon basin. The land in the desert area "La Costa" is quite fertile with a constant temperature and constant sunshine 10 hours per day all year round. If water is added i.e. if the ground is irrigated the conditions for agriculture are excellent. The population amounts to about 16 million the major part of which are Indians and Mestizos. The country is as large as France, Spain and West Germany put together. Extremely difficult Living conditions in many parts of the country further aggravated by periods of serious droughts even in the mountains have caused a movement of people from the rural areas into the cities. The pressure on lima, the capital, is particularly great. The economy of the country which for years has been very strained has now improved considerably thanks to the increased prices of metals on the international market and to the increased production of oil in the country especially in the Amazon region. The production of food has however not increased in the same proportion as the the population and large quantities of grain have to be imported at present.
Close to Arequipa in the South the second largest town in Peru it has been a dream for generations to lead water to the large Majes and Siguas plains in order to irrigate and cultivate vast areas which are now lying completely arid. During the 1960s the Italian consulting firm Electroconsult of Milan (ELC) completed a plan which would realize this dream making the cultivation of 65,000 hectares possible with two to three crop's per year and a generating power of 656 MW.