Irrigation district photo

Photo: Washington State University

QUINCY - The Bureau of Reclamation announced on Monday that two irrigation districts in the Columbia Basin have been awarded more than half a million dollars in total to help communities conserve water.

The East Columbia Basin Irrigation District and Quincy-Columbia Basin Irrigation District will split $600,000 in grants from the WaterSMART Program.

“Existing water and hydropower resources are being strained as our infrastructure ages and population grows. The WaterSMART program provides critical support to western communities, helping to best conserve limited water resources,” Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt said.

According to the agency, the time frame for the completion of the projects is less than two years.

The East Columbia Basin Irrigation District will be given $300,000 to convert roughly 17,124 of earthen canals to polyvinyl chloride pipelines aimed at dealing with seepage and evapotranspiration deprivations.

The project is expected to result in water savings of 882 acre-feet annually, The Bureau of Reclamation stated.

The Quincy-Columbia Basin Irrigation District will be given $300,000 to surround 8,750 feet of the earthen W61F canal with concrete lining over a geomembrane liner to tackle ongoing seepage privation.

The project is expected to result in water savings of 1,657 acre-feet annually, officials said.

"Through WaterSMART, Reclamation works cooperatively with states, tribes, and local entities as they plan for and implement actions to increase water supply reliability through investments to modernize existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts," the agency stated.

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