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Water

Water is a necessity in growing crops. The Ag Council encourages water conservation among Arkansas farmers, and we support state and federal incentives and investments in water conservation systems, including best management practices, land improvements, and technology deployment. In addition, we support the Grand Prairie Demonstration Project and the Bayou Meto Irrigation Project, both of which will transfer excess surface water from Arkansas rivers to farmland for crop use, thus reducing dependence on groundwater supplies in areas of the state where it is most critical.

Resources

Delta Plastics Pipe Planner:
The Ag Council is a partner stakeholder with Delta Plastics, the leading polytube provider for agricultural furrow irrigation pipe product. Delta Plastics developed a free pipe hole selection software program known as Pipe Planner to improve irrigation efficiency for in-furrow crop irrigation. Pipe Planner utilizes GPS mapping systems, well water flow pressure, and other factors to provide tailored irrigation systems that maximize irrigation efficiency on the farm, which leads to water savings, labor savings, time savings, and money savings. We encourage Ag Council members utilizing in-furrow irrigation with polypipe to adopt PipePlanner on every acre.
PIPE PLANNER WEBSITE
PIPE PLANNER YOUTUBE
DELTA PLASTICS TWITTER

To learn more about Pipe Planner offerings and how you can begin maximizing your field’s potential, contact a Delta Plastics representative today at mlindsey@deltaplastics.com or 800-277-9172.

Smart Farm Irrigation Water Management:
Smart Farm is an advanced Irrigation Water Management (IWM) system aimed at automating irrigation water well systems on farms. Such automation provides real time monitoring and control over irrigation systems as well as accurate water use data through a growing and irrigation season. In addition to monitoring and controlling pumps, the Smart Farm System can incorporate soil moisture monitors and weather information to help advise farmers on their irrigation decision making. The Smart Farm System can be operated via computer, tablet or smartphone.
SMARTFARM WEBSITE

University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service (Water):
The University of Arkansas System's Division of Agriculture's Cooperative Extension Service offers a multitude of resources for Arkansas producers, including crop irrigation information and recommendations for Arkansas grown crops.
UAEX WATER WEBSITE
UAEX SOIL & WATER WEBINARS

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service:
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) offers a wide range of incentives to Arkansas farmers looking to adopt irrigation technologies, systems, and practices to further increase efficient water use on farm.
NRCS ARKANSAS WEBSITE
NRCS INCENTIVE PROGRAM OPPORTUNITIES

Arkansas Natural Resources Commission:
The Arkansas Natural Resources Commission (ANRC), a division of the Arkansas Department of Agriculture, establishes water policy for the State of Arkansas through the State Water Plan. They are responsible for managing water well registrations, and they operate tax incentive programs (state income tax credits) that assist farmers make land improvements such as land leveling, tail water recovery systems, and surface water reservoirs designed to reduce groundwater depletion. The tax incentives also cover eligible costs for irrigation automation systems designed at increasing water use efficiency on farms. ANRC also offers tax incentives for improvements made to wetlands and riparian areas on private lands.
ANRC WEBSITE
ANRC WATER RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT & CONSERVATION TAX CREDITS
ANRC WETLAND & RIPARIAN ZONE TAX CREDIT PROGRAM

Contact: Kathryn Stewart, Water Conservation Specialist
Arkansas Natural Resources Commission
101 East Capitol Avenue, Suite 350
Little Rock, Arkansas 72201
Telephone: (501) 682-3972 Fax (501) 683-5677
Email: kathryn.stewart@arkansas.gov

USA RICE REGIONAL CONSERVATION PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM:
USA Rice is at the forefront of many conservation and sustainability initiatives. Their Rice Stewardship Initiative, which began as a Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), helps to provide financial and technical resources to rice farmers looking to increase water efficiency and wildlife habitat on their farms. The RCPP grant is a partnership between USA Rice, Ducks Unlimited and other industry companies and organizations.
USA RICE SUSTAINABILITY WEBSITE
USA RICE STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM WEBSITE

USA RICE CONSERVATION PROGRAM SEARCH TOOL

ARKANSAS ASSOCIATION OF CONSERVATION DISTRICTS:
Arkansas Conservation Districts are local government sponsored entities tasked with providing local managmenet of soil and water resources. These entities help keep decision making on soil and water conservation matters at the local level. Each district is governed by a board of five directors who serve without pay. Two directors are appointed by the ANRC and three are elected by local resident landowners.
AACD WEBSITE
AACD DISTRICTS MAP
AACD OFFICE CONTACT INFO

BAYOU METO IRRIGATION PROJECT:
The Bayou Meto Irrigation Project is a regional water project designed to take excess surface water flow in the Arkansas River and deliver it to parts of the Grand Prairie region from the Interstate 40 area down to the Lower Bayou Meto Wildlife Management Area and back to the Arkansas River. The water utilized through this project will go towards crop irrigation and wildlife habitat, thus decreasing the rate of depletion in the aquifer. This project requires federal, state and local funding to complete. The project was authorized and funded by Congress and it is currently in the Construction phase with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Ag Council supports this project, and urges quick action to appropriate necessary funds to complete the project and make water available as soon as possible.

USACE WEBSITE
WEBSITE

GRAND PRAIRIE DEMONSTRATION PROJECT:
The Grand Prairie Demonstration Project is a regional water project similar in design to the Bayou Meto Irrigation Project. This project is designed to take excess surface water flow in the White River and deliver it to parts of the Grand Prairie region from the Interstate 40 area down to the Arkansas River. The water utilized through this project will go towards crop irrigation and wildlife habitat, thus decreasing the rate of depletion in the aquifer. This project requires federal, state and local funding to complete. The project was authorized and funded by Congress and it is currently in the Construction phase with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Ag Council supports this project, and urges quick action to appropriate necessary funds to complete the project and make water available as soon as possible.
USACE WEBSITE

GOVERNMENT INCENTIVES:
ANRC WATER RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT & CONSERVATION TAX CREDITS
ANRC WETLAND & RIPARIAN ZONE TAX CREDIT PROGRAM
NRCS INCENTIVE PROGRAM OPPORTUNITIES
NRCS ARKANSAS WEBSITE
NRCS WATER HOMEPAGE
Program Contacts
Irrigation and Emergency Watershed Protection Program
Walt Delp, P.E.
State Conservation Engineer
(501) 301-3141
Watershed Planning, Watershed Program and Rehabilitation
Kenneth Lee
ASTC Programs
(501) 301-3165

Emergency Watershed Protection (Recovery) safeguards lives and property from floods, drought, and the products of erosion on any watershed whenever fire, flood or any other natural occurrence is causing or has caused a sudden impairment of the watershed.
Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations (WFPO) Program provides technical and financial assistance to entities of State and local governments and Tribes (project sponsors) for planning and installing watershed projects.
Watershed Surveys and Planning (WSP) authorizes NRCS to cooperate with Federal, State, and local agencies and Tribal governments to protect watersheds from damage caused by erosion, floodwater, sediment and to conserve and develop water and land resources.
Watershed Operations provides technical and financial assistance to States, local governments and Tribes (project sponsors) to plan and implement authorized watershed project plans.
Watershed Rehabilitation assists project sponsors with rehabilitation of aging project dams. Only dams installed under PL-566, the Pilot Watershed Program, PL-534, or RC&D Programs are eligible.