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Tuesday
Nov122013

Attention Groundwater Irrigator’s in the Upper Loup NRD District. Funds are still available but time to reserve flowmeters is running short…

Flow meters are a valuable tool for providing producers with information about the total amount of irrigation water being applied.With rising input costs and uncertain markets, eliminating guesswork is a top priority for irrigators.  Knowing the exact amount of irrigation water applied to a crop through its growing season can aid the producer in making money-saving management decisions.  Flowmeters accurately record the amount of water pumped from a well or through an irrigation system.  This information can be used to check efficiency, and can save as a watchdog device by detecting well and pump problems.

Data collected from the flowmeters also helps the NRD determine the amount of water being withdrawn from the aquifer across the district and provide information useful to future groundwater modeling efforts.  Due to the increasing demands of water for irrigation it is important that long-term water usage is managed in a sustainable and equitable way. Effective groundwater irrigation management begins with accurate water use measurements. Quantifying the amount of groundwater utilized for irrigation is essential for water and nitrate management. Currently most of the data is manually recorded by farmers which could result in irregular reporting and is subject to human errors.

With help from a Nebraska Environmental Trust Grant, the Upper Loup has cost share dollars devoted to the purchase of flowmeters for producers in our District.  Any legally registered and actively pumping irrigation well that was drilled prior to 2008 and is not associated with new irrigated acres for in years 2013 and 2014 are eligible.  Producers have until April 30, 2014 to install the flowmeter but need to make requests for the meters as soon as possible so that we may properly allocate the funds for the flowmeters.  This is a first come first serve program and only has funding for approximately 30 more meters. The NRD will reimburse you 100% of the actual cost of an impeller driving flowmeter up to $1,700.00.  As a condition of receiving a flowmeter the participating landowner agrees to pay for taxes on the meter,  installation fees  and allow the District access to the monitoring site so that the meter can be read in the fall or at the end of the irrigation season.  If you would like to reserve your meter(s) please call our office at 308-645-2250 or contact us by email at abaum@upperloupnrd.org.

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