Irrigation Leader
  • Featured,  Interview

    Instream’s Radial Gates

    Instream Water Control Projects is a Lethbridge, Alberta– based water control gate company that has been building and maintaining water control gates across the United States and Canada since 2006. It specializes in overshot and radial gates and has recently installed 10 gates of truly gargantuan proportions in an emergency spillway at Alberta’s Bassano Dam. In this interview, Frank Stang, Trevor Hazell, andRyan Morgan of Instream Water Control Projects speak with Irrigation Leader Editor-in-Chief Kris Polly about Instream’s history and its recent projects.

  • Featured,  Interview

    Financing Irrigation Projects Lessons From New Zealand

    New Zealand’s irrigation schemes are structured and financed differently from most American irrigation districts or projects. Rather than selling water to customers on a year-by-year basis, New Zealand irrigation schemes sell their customers shares that also involve long-term water supply arrangements. Those arrangements, often valid for a term of 30 years or more, guarantee schemes a steady source of income. In fact, it is that steady cash flow that constitutes the schemes’ most valuable asset. When banks lend money to schemes, they do it on the basis of this cash flow. David Stock is a privately practicing commercial barrister in Christchurch, New Zealand, who has special expertise in water distribution…

  • Featured,  Interview

    Finding the Best Grants for Water Infrastructure Projects

    There are a wide variety of federal and state-level grants in existence to fund major investments in water infrastructure. However, it is difficult to identify the most appropriate grant for a given project, to prepare application materials in a thorough and timely manner, and to draw up a successful application. That is where Dig Deep Research steps in. A boutique consulting firm founded in 2010, Dig Deep focuses on helping agencies pursue funding options for infrastructure projects. In this interview, Tia Cavender, chief executive officer (CEO) of Dig Deep Research, speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about how her company helps municipal agencies successfully obtain grant funding.

  • Featured,  Interview

    Funding Water Projects Through WaterSMART

    WaterSMART is a Bureau of Reclamation initiative aimed at providing federal cost-share funding to local, state, and tribal entities as they plan and execute projects to save water and energy. The WaterSMART umbrella covers a wide variety of funding programs, including the eponymous WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grants, Small- Scale Water Efficiency Grants, Title XVI Recycling and Reuse Program, Basin Studies, and others. In this interview, Avra Morgan, program coordinator for the Cooperative Watershed Management Program and the water marketing portion of the WaterSMART Grants Program, Amanda Erath, program coordinator for Title XVI and for Basin Studies activity, and Josh German, program coordinator for the WaterSMART Grants portion of…

  • Featured,  Interview

    Capital Improvements After Title Transfer: A Conversation With Matt Lukasiewicz

    The Farwell and Sargent Irrigation Districts of central Nebraska were constructed by the Bureau of Reclamation in the 1950s and early 1960s under the umbrella of the Loup Basin Reclamation District. Loup Basin owns the easements, the water rights, and the facilities, while the other two irrigation districts operate and maintain those facilities. In 2002, Loup Basin had the title for its system transferred to it from the federal government. Matt Lukasiewicz is the general manager of the Loup Basin Reclamation District, the Farwell Irrigation District, and the Sargent Irrigation District. In this interview, he speaks with Irrigation Leader Editor-in-Chief Kris Polly about his districts’ infrastructure projects and financing strategies…

  • Featured,  Interview

    Why Your Irrigation District Needs a Media Plan

    In today’s media environment, news travels fast and customers can communicate their feedback and complaints instantly and publicly. This means that organizations like irrigation districts need to prepare for possible crisis situations in advance, by identifying spokespeople, preparing media plans, and proactively communicating with their customers and employees. In this interview, Keith Yaskin, president of The Flip Side Communications, speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about how irrigation districts should handle the stressful and ever-evolving landscape of digital media.

  • Featured,  Interview

    How Agri-Inject Invites the Public In

    Since the 1980s, Yuma, Colorado–based Agri-Inject has been a leader in manufacturing products for chemigation, which is the use of mobile irrigation systems to apply fertilizer and chemicals in liquid form. Agri-Inject, however, is also a leader in public outreach. The company brings local students into its facilities for tours and simulations and also provides opportunities for internships. In this interview, Erik Tribelhorn, the chief executive officer of Agri-Inject, speaks with Irrigation Leader Editor-in-Chief Kris Polly about how Agri-Inject is using outreach and internship programs to train up the next generation of ag manufacturers.

  • Featured,  Interview

    Naches-Selah’s Outreach To Local Schools

    The Naches-Selah Irrigation District serves more than 10,500 acres in Washington’s Yakima County and has a history going back to the 19th century. The land the district serves is devoted predominantly to apple, cherry, and pear orchards, some of which have now been in the same families for five or six generations. Justin Harter has been the district’s general manager for the past 14 years. For the past several years, he has also been involved in a simple and effective form of public outreach. Twice a year, Mr. Harter presents information about his district and about the art of water management generally to a local seventh grade class, building the…

  • Featured,  Interview

    Kennewick Irrigation District’s Customer Service Strategy

    Kennewick Irrigation District (KID), nestled in the Tri-Cities area of Washington State, was started in the 1950s. The canal system that KID was formed to build is still in operation today, serving more than 65,000 people. The district has shifted from primarily agricultural land usage to more urban land usage as the Tri-Cities— Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland—have grown. To make that shift successful, the district employs various methods of outreach to engage the public about how their water is used. In this interview, Dana Hernandez, the customer service supervisor at KID, speaks with Irrigation Leader Managing Editor Joshua Dill about the district’s history, its current public outreach strategy, and the…

  • Featured,  Interview

    Most Crop Per Drop The Arkansas Irrigation Yield Contest

    Most farmers are familiar with contests in which participants try to achieve the maximum yield of a crop from a given field. Fewer would be familiar with a contest in which participants’ total crop yield is divided by the amount of water they use—thus measuring their water use efficiency. That’s the kind of contest that Dr. Chris Henry and his colleagues at the University of Arkansas sponsored for the first time in 2018. Building on the success of a 5-year on-farm demonstration program, they developed the Arkansas Irrigation Yield Contest to harness farmers’ ingenuity and competitive instincts in order to increase water use efficiency. In this interview with Irrigation Leader…