An irrigation pump efficiency seminar will be held Thursday, Dec. 16 at 8:30 a.m. at the Center for Irrigation Technology (CIT), Chestnut and Barstow avenues on the campus of California State University, Fresno. A continental breakfast will be offered from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m.

The free seminar will discuss pump efficiency tests, water measurement and flow meters, irrigation scheduling, energy calculations, and the cost-share Agricultural Pump Efficiency Program, which provides funds for pump tests and repairs. Additional information will include specifying an efficient pump, pump curves, maintaining an efficient pump and understanding and interpreting pump tests.

“This seminar will help growers understand the relationship between electric and natural gas-powered engines and pumps for overall pumping plant efficiency, and how the Pump Efficiency Program can help pay for necessary pump repairs,” said Bill Green, education manager with CIT's APEP.

The seminar also will provide information on irrigation scheduling, flow meters, and well efficiency and performance. Additional discussions will focus on chemigation and backflow prevention practices.

A free barbecue lunch will be served, and 1.5 hours of pest control advisory continuing education credit will be offered for the chemigation portion of the program (1 hour laws & regulations, one-half hour other).

The event is part of CIT's Agricultural Pump Efficiency Program, a statewide irrigation pump efficiency program funded by a grant from the California Public Utilities Commission. Now in its second year, the program provides funds to support pump efficiency tests and incentive rebates for pump retrofits/repairs for natural gas- and electric-powered irrigation pumps.

During the program's first year, more than 4,500 pump tests were performed on electric- and natural gas-powered pumps, and the resulting pump repairs to help improve energy efficiency netted a total savings of 8.3 million kilowatt-hours in electricity and 150,000 therms of natural gas.

Using approved pump-testing companies, farmers can test their pumps at a reduced cost to achieve maximum efficiency. The program also provides incentive rebates for repairs and retrofits. Agricultural rate customers of natural gas and/or electric service from PG&E, Southern California Edison and Southern California Gas Co. are eligible to participate.

To register for the free seminar, call the APEP at (800) 845-6038.