As Congress considers how to structure an economic stimulus package, investing in water infrastructure is imperative for securing our communities throughout the West. Aging agricultural infrastructure, an expanding population, persistent droughts, and declining fish populations are stressing scarce water resources. Farmers in the Western United States rely on irrigation to grow food. But the dams and canals that capture and convey this water from rivers to farms are inefficient, and, in many scenarios, farmers are not getting the water they need.
Investing in modernizing our irrigation systems throughout the Western United States makes our water supply and rural communities more resilient, secures our food supply, creates opportunities for domestic energy production, and improves fish and wildlife habitat. By addressing fundamental problems in aging water infrastructure, modernizing irrigation systems provides unifying solutions for rural farming communities and the environment.
Farmers Conservation Alliance (FCA®) is a 501c3 nonprofit organization that is championing irrigation modernization strategies to achieve agricultural resilience and conservation benefits. Formed in 2005, FCA is currently partnering with farmers throughout the west to install fish screens and develop and implement customized approaches for broad-scale irrigation modernization.