The U.S. Department of Agriculture will invest $21 million next fiscal year in water conservation and drought resilience projects in 13 Western states through the WaterSMART initiative.
Farmers, ranchers and communities in Western states continue to face significant drought-related challenges. WaterSMART is a collaboration between the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation that seeks to address these challenges through coordinated investments in drought resilience projects. Since 2011, WaterSMART has helped water users balance water supply and demand by updating aging infrastructure, improving agricultural water conservation and raising awareness about water conflicts.
“Drought is a complex challenge, and our collaboration on WaterSMART is part of our strategic approach to help producers conserve water and build resilience while also bringing important partners to the table. Bringing as many like-minded individuals and groups as possible to innovate together is our best solution for water management in the West,” NRCS Chief Terry Cosby said in a press release.
The $21 million investment will help fund projects in 15 new priority areas and 25 existing priority areas across California, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.
Learn more here.