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IA releases Principles of Efficient Agricultural Irrigation

FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA (Aug. 1, 2017)
— In keeping with its mission to promote efficient irrigation, the Irrigation Association has released a set of concepts entitled Principles of Efficient Agricultural Irrigation. The document outlines nine key principles that growers should follow to most efficiently use water when irrigating.

IA Industry Development Director Brent Mecham, CID, CLWM, CIC, CAIS, spoke about Principles of Efficient Agricultural Irrigation at a congressional briefing hosted by the U.S. Geological Survey. After discussing the role of science in irrigation, Mecham highlighted Principles of Efficient Agricultural Irrigation as an example of the potential for technology use in agriculture. Developments in science and irrigation technology give growers the tools necessary to put efficient irrigation concepts into action. The USGS briefing also allowed the IA to distribute copies of the document to the congressional staffers in attendance.

The following ideas are the nine key concepts referenced in the document:

  1. Use qualified professionals to plan and help manage irrigation systems.
  2. Know and protect the water supply and the environment.
  3. Identify the soil type and its soil water characteristics to manage the water supply.
  4. Understand crop water needs to know when and how much water should be applied.
  5. Select appropriate irrigation methods that will efficiently deliver water to the crop.
  6. Plan and implement irrigation scheduling to use water efficiently.
  7. Adopt and apply innovative technology to improve water management.
  8. Maintain accurate records to facilitate better decisions on crop inputs.
  9. Anticipate water shortages and have planned strategies to respond.
  10. The IA hopes that Principles of Efficient Agricultural Irrigation provides guidance for growers as they work to irrigate more efficiently. 

Visit the IA website for more information about Principles of Efficient Agricultural Irrigation, including downloadable versions of the document and a summary.