Irrigation Leader
  • Featured,  Interview

    Enforcing Washington’s Screening Requirements Through Cooperative Compliance

    Water diverters in Washington State may know that fish screening is required by law, but they may not understand the relevant regulations and may struggle to afford compliant fish screens. The mission of the fish screening section of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is to solve these problems. Through its cooperative compliance approach, it aims to establish relationships of trust with water users, help explain screening requirements, and help users afford appropriate devices. In this interview, WDFW Biologist Danny Didricksen tells Irrigation Leader about how the screening section works to build, install, and care for screens for the benefit of both fish and water users.

  • Featured,  Interview

    A Cultural Exchange Between Washington State and New Zealand

    One member of the Irrigation Leader tour in New Zealand was Phil Rigdon, the superintendent of the Yakama Nation’s Department of Natural Resources, which oversees 17 different programs that cover fisheries, water, forestry, and environmental protection. While New Zealand is half a world away from the Yakima Valley, it has many commonalities, from the need to balance water use among fish, environmental needs, and agriculture to the need for water storage structures on irrigation districts. During the tour, Mr. Rigdon was also able to take part in a cultural exchange with members of the indigenous Māori people prior to the larger group visiting their community. In this interview, Mr. Rigdon…

  • Flipbook

    Volume 11 Issue 4 April 2020 Washington State Edition

    New Zealand is a country of gracious people, amazing scenery, and highly productive irrigated agriculture. New Zealanders, or Kiwis, face many of the same irrigation challenges that Americans do, though in some cases they have come up with new and innovative solutions that Americans can learn from. All this was on display during Irrigation Leader’s New Zealand irrigation education and trade tour, which took place from February 22 to 27.  A total of 34 participants, our largest tour group ever, traversed the beautiful South Island, visiting irrigated pastures, farms, indigenous Māori communities, apiaries, vineyards, cities, and sites of natural beauty. Along the way, we saw gravity-fed ponds, automated gates, aquifer…

  • Flipbook

    Volume 11 Issue 4 April 2020

    New Zealand is a country of gracious people, amazing scenery, and highly productive irrigated agriculture. New Zealanders, or Kiwis, face many of the same irrigation challenges that Americans do, though in some cases they have come up with new and innovative solutions that Americans can learn from. All this was on display during Irrigation Leader’s New Zealand irrigation education and trade tour, which took place from February 22 to 27.  A total of 34 participants, our largest tour group ever, traversed the beautiful South Island, visiting irrigated pastures, farms, indigenous Māori communities, apiaries, vineyards, cities, and sites of natural beauty. Along the way, we saw gravity-fed ponds, automated gates, aquifer…

  • Featured,  Interview

    Reflections on the Tour Experience

    Brian Betcher: General Manager (Retired), Maricopa-Stanfield Irrigation and Drainage District, Pinal County, Arizona  Being recently retired from many years of irrigation district management, my focus was somewhat different for this trip. I took more note of big-picture comparisons between what I saw in New Zealand and the water world of Arizona. Upon my return home, I reflected on the benefits of having served a district that benefited from having one of its main sources of water be a river system that has tremendous storage. That created wonderful operational reliability and resiliency—the system is still half full after a 25-year drought. System automation and state-of-the-art water measurement are already part of my…

  • Featured,  Innovator,  Interview

    How Agri-Inject’s Fertigation Technology Can Prevent Nitrate Leaching

    Agri-Inject is a pioneer in the chemigation field. Since the 1980s, the Yuma, Colorado–based company has been promoting the use of mobile irrigation systems to apply fertilizer and chemicals in liquid form. This method of application, known as fertigation, allows for the quick, lowvolume, and continuous application of fertilizer, “spoon-feeding” crops no more than they can absorb and thus preventing leaching and nitrate pollution. In this interview, Erik Tribelhorn, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Agri-Inject, speaks with Irrigation Leader about the advantages of fertigation and Agri-Inject’s sales around the world.

  • Featured,  Interview

    Planning the Irrigation Leader Tour of New Zealand

    Irrigation Leader’s recent tour of New Zealand was planned in part by Mel Brooks, the chief executive officer (CEO) of MHV Water, New Zealand’s largest irrigation scheme. MHV Water provides water to over 200 farmer-shareholders on the fertile Canterbury Plains area of New Zealand’s South Island. In this interview, Mel explains how she selected tour locations that would showcase New Zealand’s irrigation industry, culture, and people.

  • Featured,  Interview

    The Water Education Foundation: Helping Professionals and the Public Understand Western Water

    The Water Education Foundation has been educating water professionals and the general public in California and across the Colorado River basin for more than 40 years. Its tours, conferences, publications, and online resources make the complex world of western water more easily comprehensible while also highlighting the high stakes of the issues involved. In this interview, Executive Director Jennifer Bowles tells Irrigation Leader about the foundation’s history, its current activities, and its importance for the irrigation audience.