What is in this article?:
- Reclamation has selected five projects for funding, totaling $4.1 million, under its WaterSMART program.
- Adding $5 million from NRCS to Reclamation’s $4.1 million in WaterSMART funding, a total of $9.1 million is being provided to enhance water conservation.
- Buena Vista Water Storage District
The Water Use and Irrigation Efficiency Project
Reclamation Funding: $999,681, Total Project Cost: $2,081,648
The project will line 1 mile of earthen canal to reduce seepage losses, build new turnouts for more efficient water deliveries, install a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition system and retrofit meters. The project is expected to conserve 4,000 acre-feet per year and will provide water supply sustainability to the district and contribute to wildlife enhancements. These system improvements will provide more precise water deliveries to growers, allowing them to implement such things as tailwater return systems, ditch lining and irrigation system evaluations and retrofits.
- South San Joaquin Irrigation District
South San Joaquin Irrigation District, Division 9 Irrigation Enhancement Project
Reclamation Funding: $1,000,000, Total Project Cost: $12,996,280
The project will build a state-of-the-art, pressurized irrigation system, replacing an open channel system to irrigate approximately 3,800 acres, and will capture agricultural run-off for irrigation re-use. The project incorporates automated water delivery controls and updated metering technology, allowing for precise measurement and accounting of water use. The project will result in energy conservation, reduced air emissions and improved water quality, and it is expected to conserve 3,498 acre-feet of water per year. Fields currently flood-irrigated can convert to sprinkler or micro-drip irrigation systems that result in significantly less on-farm water use.
- Semitropic Water Storage District
Water Use Efficiency and Energy Improvements for Semitropic Water Storage District and Growers
Reclamation Funding: $711,170, Total Project Cost: $1,474,640
The project will implement district-level improvements to increase the district’s water and energy efficiencies by adding pumping capacity at two conveyance facilities and by adding a turbine to one of the district’s pumping plants. Semitropic estimates that the turbine will produce 2.9 percent of the District’s power needs. With the addition of this turbine, 16 percent of the District’s power need will be met with renewable energy sources. The project is expected to conserve 2,560 acre-feet of water per year. Semitropic's improvements will enable growers to enhance their on-farm efficiency by reducing the on-farm energy required to provide groundwater and will enable growers to operate improved drip systems.
- Henry Miller Reclamation District 2131
Arroyo Canal Modernization
Reclamation Funding: $434,975, Total Project Cost: $886,802
The project will install four long-crested weirs (LCW) on the main canal for the district. LCWs precisely control canal-water levels and help prevent system spills. Installing LCWs will reduce the water-level fluctuations in the canal, providing more constant water deliveries. This will improve the reliability and the flexibility of the water deliveries to growers and promote accurate measuring and water accounting. The district estimates the project will conserve 7,200 acre-feet of water per year and enable district growers to invest in more efficient irrigation systems such as pressurized drip systems.
- Firebaugh Canal Water District
Firebaugh Canal Water District 1st Lift Canal Lining Project Phase 1-Terminus to Washoe Avenue
Reclamation Funding: $1,000,000 Total Project Cost: $2,814,000
The project will concrete-line 2.6 miles of earthen canal to prevent seepage and sediment in delivered surface water. By decreasing the suspended silts, growers can reduce the back-flushing and filtering needed for efficient on-farm irrigation systems. In addition to conserving 300 acre-feet of water per year, this project will encourage growers to install high-efficiency on-farm irrigation systems such as drip or sub-surface drip irrigation.
Beyond the Bay-Delta, the nation as a whole faces increasing water-resource challenges and issues that make it difficult to meet today’s diverse water needs through traditional water management approaches. The Department of the Interior’s WaterSMART program is working to achieve a sustainable water strategy throughout the nation. For more information on the WaterSMART program, please visit www.usbr.gov/WaterSMART.