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Oregon State’s dry farming project hosts field days in August

Oregon State University’s dry farming project, which began when drought still gripped much of the West, has expanded to the point that 30 farms are hosting field trials this year on the prospects of growing vegetables and orchard crops with little or no irrigation.

Twelve Western Oregon sites will host field days in August, with visits available every Tuesday — Aug. 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29. The cost is $10 per person per date. Registration and other details are […]

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Oregon Carves a Path for Water Transfers in the West

SINCE 1971, CRIS Converse and her family have relied on water from Oregon’s Whychus Creek to raise cattle and grow hay. Their Pine Meadow Ranch thrives, in part, because the family’s water rights date back to 1850, assuring access to water virtually without limit.

By the 2000s, however, concern for Oregon’s salmon populations had become a powerful movement. And salmon that had spawned in Whychus Creek for millennia couldn’t get past the Converse family dam.

So Converse agreed to sell […]

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New agricultural wells prohibited in Oregon’s Walla Walla subbasin

Mateusz PerkowskiCapital Press Published on May 11, 2017 4:44PM

SALEM — Oregon’s water regulators have unanimously voted to stop permitting new agricultural wells in Northeast Oregon’s 300,000-acre Walla Walla subbasin due to groundwater depletion concerns.

At its May 11 meeting, the Oregon Water Resources Commission also designated the subbasin as a “serious water management problem area,” which means irrigators with existing basalt wells must install flow meters to measure their water usage and report it to state regulators.

The restriction […]

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Hillsboro joins national competition for water conservation

April 1, 2017 Written by Geoff Pursinger Hillsboro community members can pledge online to be ‘water-wise’ by conserving water for the chance to win a Toyota Prius. The Hillsboro City Council is asking residents to conserve water this month, as part of a national contest.

Hillsboro leaders have their sights set on winning the Wyland National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation. The friendly competition asks leaders across the country to inspire their communities to conserve water, when possible.

“On behalf […]

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Irrigators criticize $100 water rights fee proposal

SALEM — A proposed $100 annual fee on all Oregon water rights has met with criticism from irrigators who say it would contribute to already mounting financial burdens.

Farmers overwhelmingly testified against House Bill 2706, which aims to raise money for water management, during a March 22 hearing before the House Committee on Energy and Environment.

Members of the Klamath Water Users Association, for example, are already paying steep costs to comply with the Endangered Species Act and engage in […]

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Exhibitor helps farmers ‘harvest’ water

by Brenna Weingard

January 13, 2017

Ag Capitol Press The No. 1 question Michael Martins of Oregon Rain Harvesting gets is “Is it legal?”

“A lot of people think collecting rainwater in Oregon is against the law — not true,” said Martins, owner of the West Linn, Ore., business. “So long as you capture the water from a manmade structure it’s very legal and is a safe and cost-effective way to reduce the environmental impact of our need for water.”

[…]

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Draining Oregon: State regulators must stop approving wells when water levels are unknown

By The Oregonian Editorial Board on September 10, 2016 at 10:00 AM, State regulators approve permits for wells in Oregon even as they suspect there isn’t enough water in some areas to keep pace.

A permit application might state it “cannot be determined” whether enough ground water existed for the well. Yet time and again, Oregon Water Resources Department managers approved the application.

The lax regulatory culture is so engrained, some farmers and ranchers began pumping their wells before submitting […]

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Fryeburg (Maine) water trustees concerned about wells (Poland Spring is a Nestle contract)

By Daymond Steer

FRYEBURG, Maine — Fryeburg Water District Trustees, concerned about the lack of rain this summer, are asking constituents to fill out an online survey about how their wells are performing and also about their satisfaction with the local water company. Meanwhile, the operator of the town’s water works is asking residents to be conservative with their water use.

The trustees form a quasi-municipal board created in the event that stockholders of the private Fryeburg Water Co. want […]

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8 takeaways from ‘Draining Oregon': The big water giveaway

on August 26, 2016 Something seemed amiss in Harney County last summer, long before it became the scene of January’s armed standoff at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

After years of liberally granting access to underground water across the high desert of southeastern Oregon, the state abruptly told irrigators it would accept no new applications to pump wells. Regulators launched a 5-year study, saying they feared newly dug wells were sucking up unsustainable quantities of water. Cattle ranching and alfalfa, […]

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Apple funding wastewater treatment centre in Oregon

Nicky Cappella Fri 1 Jul 2016 2.43pm

Apple confirmed that it will fund a wastewater treatment facility in the tiny town of Prineville, Oregon which houses data centres for Apple and Facebook. The company recently broke ground on a second data centre in Prineville.

Apple agreed to pay for the treatment facility, which the city says may save as much as 5 million gallons of water per year. The company is already Prineville’s largest consumer of water, using 27 million […]

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