Farm and Ranch Water Infrastructure Program

by 5m Editor
22 May 2009, at 8:31am

CANADA - A province-wide Farm and Ranch Water Infrastructure Program, unveiled by the Saskatchewan government is expected to help the province's farmers protect themselves against drought while helping boost agricultural opportunities in the province, writes Bruce Cochrane.

In response to successive years of drought, a water infrastructure program was launched in southwestern Saskatchewan last year.

That program has now been expanded to cover the entire province and will provide almost 53 million dollars over four years.

Agriculture minister Bob Bjornerud says the program was received very well last year and a lot people in the southwest dug dugouts, did piping and drilled wells.

Bob Bjornerud-Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister

Every farmer in the province right now is covered under the program, is eligible to apply.

Also our rural municipalities, we have made it available to them because when it comes to the cost of a community well or something of course the costs are higher and they're in a better position to do that.

First Nations out there can take part in it, that are involved in agriculture.

Projects, anything that's tied to agriculture can apply for the water program on any aspect whether it's dugouts or piping or what ever it is.

It includes shallow and deep buried pipelines and then, as I said before, on-farm wells and community wells.

It covers a wide range of water provided for agriculture whether it's the cattle industry, what ever it is.

Especially for areas like for areas in the southwest when drought hits us and we know from time to time that will happen again that we're more prepared for it and we have a resource there to provide water in those times.

Mr Bjornerud says, with herds getting very large right now, you have to have water on your farms and ranches whether it's a year when we get lots of rain or one when we happen to get into drought periods.

He suggests, by drilling a lot more wells, we'll be more prepared for the next drought and he hopes those wells will be in place for the next 20, 30, 40 years.

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