If EFA can be of any assistance in finding resources about on-farm water conservation, please contact us!
I. Ag Water Stewardship Resources
Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS)
The NRCS works with landowners by providing conservation planning and technical assistance in water, soil, energy, etc. to foster healthy ecosystems. They also provide funding through programs such as the Agricultural Water Enhancement Program (AWEP), Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), and other Farm Bill-funded programs.
The NRCS has state offices across the country: if you are not in California you can connect to your state’s resources through the national site: http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/site/national/home/
California Resource Conservation District (RCD)
The CA RCD has 100 regional offices. Connect with your local office for funding and project opportunities.
University of California Co-op Extension—UC Agriculture and Natural Resources
More services for your project are available through 200 locally based Cooperative Extension advisors and specialists.
Ag Innovations Network—California Roundtable on Water and Food Supply
This site is a hub for news and reports in California Agricultural water use. Ag Innovation’s work also identifies action and membership opportunities.
Occidental Arts and Ecology Center —The WATER Institute
The WATER Institute (Watershed Advocacy, Training, Education, & Research) is committed to raising hydrological literacy. The site has recommended readings, inspirational words, and is a partner in EFA’s water work.
USDA Alternative Farming Systems Information Center—Water Conservation
This USDA site promotes “wise development, control, protection, management and use of water resources.” The information center has a number of resources, which will be of practical use to farmers.
Driscoll’s Water Conservation and Quality
Driscoll’s Berries are featured in the Precision Irrigation case study video. They are among the largest growers in the Pajaro Valley, whose aquifer has been in overdraft since the 1950’s. Thus, Driscoll’s takes water conservation seriously.
Hortau’s wireless irrigation network was featured in the Reiter Berry Farms Precision Irrigation case study video, and is an example of a water tension metering system technology that can help farmers save water.
University of California—Water Resources Collections and Archives
This website is a library of contemporary and historic materials on all aspects of water resources. This is likely not a practical resource for your on-farm projects, but its archival resources may be useful for learning about local projects and histories.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
Sustainable agriculture and water quality statistics and meta-economic and policy analyses are available through this site. Their data on broad trends and publications such as: “Water Quality and Agriculture: Meeting the Policy Challenge—Key Messages and Executive Summary” may be valuable for grant writing and beginning to make a case for worldwide water quality control.
California’s Water: A Crisis We Can’t Ignore
The Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA), a coalition of 450 public water agencies, has launched a statewide effort to educate Californians about critical challenges now confronting the state’s water supply and delivery system.
California Water Plan
The CA Water Plan is updated every five years and it presents the status and trends of California’s water-dependent natural resources; water supplies; and agricultural, urban, and environmental water demands for a range of plausible future scenarios. The 2009 Update and the 2013 Update are both worth taking the time to browse.
USDA Annual Phosphorus Loss Estimator
This is a tool developed by USDA scientists that can help you model phosphorus loss in runoff and determine ways to reduce these losses.
Regional Water Management Foundation—Community Foundation, Santa Cruz County
The Community Foundation, in cooperation with local agencies has created the Regional Water Management Foundation to support high-priority projects in Santa Cruz County. Their work is done through grants awarded by the state’s Integrated Regional Water Management Program.
II. Valuable Water Reports
From Storage to Retention, CA Roundtable on Water and Food Supply
Agricultural Water Stewardship, CA Roundtable on Water and Food Supply
Principles of On-Farm Water Management, University of Florida IAFS Extension
Draft Report on Quantifying the Public Benefits of Water Storage Projects, CA Water Commission
California Water Stewards: Innovative On-Farm Water Management Practices, Ag Innovations Network
Encouraging California Specialty Crop Growers to Adopt Environmentally Beneficial Management Practices for Efficient Irrigation and Nutrient Management, April 2013