Call for irrigation consultants to get on board | My Machinery
CASE Agriculture
Call for irrigation consultants to get on board

Qualified and experienced irrigation consultants have been asked to submit their expressions of interest (EOI) to provide services to irrigators participating in the NSW Sustaining the Basin: Irrigated Farm Modernisation program. The $83 million program is being delivered by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) with funding from the Australian Government’s ‘Water for the Future’ initiative. The modernisation project will provide an opportunity for irrigators in the NSW Border Rivers, Gwydir, Namoi-Peel and Macquarie-Cudgegong water management areas to upgrade irrigation infrastructure, improve productivity, adapt to reduced water availability and ensure the long term sustainability of local communities. DPI’s project manager, Kate Lorimer-Ward said robust on-farm water use efficiency assessments are the key to sustainable planning for irrigators to remain viable. “The recently implemented pilot project in the NSW Border Rivers-Gwydir regions of NSW showed there was a large variation in the quality of on-farm assessments undertaken,” she said. “Irrigators need good information to make decisions about the potential water savings that could be made by modernising infrastructure and the volume of entitlement that can be handed over.” To ensure irrigators are getting the best information possible, DPI will maintain a register of approved irrigation consultants. The register will ensure assessments are undertaken by suitably qualified and experienced professionals. The plans or certification that will be undertaken by these professionals is to ensure the modernisation program is investing in projects with irrigation farmers that represent good investment decisions, for the farmer and for the State. The register will identify approved irrigation consultants willing to undertake Irrigated Farm Water Use Efficiency Assessment services for eligible irrigators in the NSW Border Rivers, Gwydir, Namoi-Peel and Macquarie-Cudgegong water management areas until September 5 2014 or while funding is available. “All irrigation consultants who submit an EOI will be assessed by an independent committee, outside of the project, according to a set of agreed industry criteria,” Ms Lorimer-Ward said. “DPI encourages all irrigation consultants to submit an EOI and be part of this new phase of improving our irrigation industries and regions.”

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