Agriculture Water Reclamation & Reuse
October 5, 2021
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Agriculture water reclamation and reuse are important to our nation’s farmlands. Reusing the irrigation water for crop production is a cost-effective way of saving money and protecting against droughts. As temperatures rise across the country, agricultural water reclamation proves to be essential. Setting up collections areas and proper pumps prove to be the solutions to water crises.
This Article Includes
- The Importance of Water Reclamation
- Industry Methods and Considerations for Reclaiming and Reusing Agricultural Water
- Appalachian Self-Priming Surface Pumps for Agriculture
The Importance of Water Reclamation
Adopting certain practices makes all the sense in the world, especially when it involves environmental sustainability. Water is such a precious resource and critical for sustaining life on this planet. The reality that we must all face is that water is a limited resource. Considering that the global population continues to grow, water use practices need to accommodate current and future water use.
Conserving residential and industrial water is very important. For the sake of this article, we will be focusing on agricultural water use which includes water used in farming, land, and crops. Water helps grow fruits and vegetables and to raise livestock. Without an adequate water supply, feeding billions of people across the world would not be possible. Agriculture in the United States currently uses roughly 46 trillion gallons per year. Agricultural water use is the second largest use of water, with industrial water being slightly higher. To put things into perspective, it takes roughly 3.3 gallons of water to produce one tomato.
Needless to say, if we want to ensure that future generations have an adequate water supply to sustain life, we must effectively manage our water use. Besides reducing water consumption, reclaiming and reusing water is a reliable approach to water use efficiency. Water reclamation and reuse are about capturing the water used for agriculture and using it again for the same or another application. Some reclaimed water can be immediately reused, but if it has been exposed to certain elements, it will need to be treated before reuse. Whatever the previous agricultural use of water, reclaiming and reusing water is a process that will reap substantial benefits and contribute to environmental sustainability benefitting the future generations of the world.
Industry Methods and Considerations for Agriculture Water Reclamation and Reuse
Moving into the future, water reclamation and reusing, also known as water recycling, will become increasingly critical due to diminishing water supplies around the world. Water use in agriculture for growing fruits and vegetables or to raise livestock is a viable opportunity for applying water reclamation and reusing methods. It has a positive impact on the environment by stretching water use as far as possible.
To reclaim and reuse water the first step is designing and constructing a planned water system to capture the water that is used, and then redistribute that water for its intended need. There is a varying degree of complexity regarding an effective planned water system. Some agriculture water reclamation systems need only to capture the water and then directly redistribute that water. Other water systems require that the reclaimed water be treated before reuse. The determining factor regarding whether or not the water must be re-treated depends on what the water was exposed to in its original use, and what the water will be used for when it is redistributed.
Water Reuse Regulations in the United States
The EPA is the Federal Agency responsible for regulating water and wastewater management in the United States. However, The EPA does not currently require or restrict any water reuse. By default, the responsibility of maintaining regulatory authority for allocating and developing water resources is managed by the state. The EPA’s overall goal is for states, tribes, and local governments to implement water reuse rules and regulations. These should be consistent with the Safe Drinking Water Act and Clean Water Act to protect water quality sources such as drinking water and bodies of water like rivers and lakes. Both the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Clean Water Act provide a solid foundation that assists states in regulating and managing water reuse. To gain an accurate understanding of the regulations associated with water reclamation and reuse for agriculture, contact your state government agency for water management.
Constructing a Planned Water Reclamation System
Staying focused on agricultural run-off and stormwater as the source of the water to be reclaimed for reuse, any water application where increased pressure must be generated or water needs to flow, pumps are the essential piece of equipment for use. In water reclamation and reuse, pumps transfer water from water collection points to tanks where water treatment is conducted, and then further along the process to a system where the water is reapplied to fruit and vegetable crops, and to where livestock is raised.
To construct a water reclamation and reuse system, one of the first steps is to make water collection areas that can consist of natural dug-outs where stormwater or agricultural run-off can naturally collect, or by physically digging the ditches or small ponds that are strategically located for capturing stormwater or agricultural run-off. Heavy plastic sheeting can be used to line the bottom of the collection area to ensure the water does not soak into the soil before the water being transferred to either a location for treatment or directly being reapplied to the desired location.
Once the collection portion of the system has been completed, the next step of the process can be started. If water treatment is required, a frac tank can be used to treat and store the water until it is reapplied to crops or livestock areas. For this application, a mobile frac tank is most appropriate so the tank can be positioned in as close enough proximity to where the water collection ponds are located, and where the water will be redistributed.
Pumps – Essential for Planned Water Reclamation Systems
Along with a frac tank, the best-suited pumping technology must be applied to effectively transfer the water from the collection point to the frac tank. Several types of pumps can be used for this purpose, but a mobile pumping system is the best for this application so that the pump can be easily transported within close enough proximity to the water collection ponds.
Once the water is treated, it must be reapplied to the desired area of land. To complete this part of the process, pumps are used to transfer the treated water from the frac tank to either an irrigation system or to another specific area such as where livestock is raised. Pumps can be used as a mechanical source for providing adequate flow and generating sufficient pressure to supply the irrigation system directly, using the frac tank as the water source.
Different Types of Irrigation Systems
There are determining factors to what type of irrigation system would work best for a given agricultural situation. Many sophisticated technologies can be added to an irrigation system to control when water is applied to crops, and how much water is applied to help avoid overwatering which helps to enhance water conservation efforts.
- Sprinkler Irrigation
- Surface Irrigation
- Furrow Irrigation
- Basin Irrigation
- Border Irrigation
- Drip Irrigation
Appalachian Self-Priming Surface Pumps by DAE Pumps for Agriculture
The Appalachian Self-Priming Pump by DAE Pumps is the perfect complement to a Planned Water Reclamation System. This pump comes with many features and benefits, including a portable trailer that enables the Appalachian Self-Priming Pump to be easily transported around the farm or ranch. Available in a range of sizes from 4-inch to 12-inch, this pump can produce flow rates up to 9510 GPM. With the use of a motor up to 285 HP, the Appalachian Self-Priming Pump can overcome high discharge pressures up to 500-feet.
The semi-open impeller and non-clogging wetted housing allow solids passage of up to 3.5-inches. With solid-laden material being common in ponds and other outdoor water collection sites, the Appalachian Self-Priming Pump is ideally suited for agriculture applications. This pump features an air separator unit and vacuum pump, which provides automatic priming and the ability to draw fluid into the pump intake when the pump is positioned as high as 7-ft. above the surface of the fluid source.
There are several different versions of the Appalachian Self-Priming Pump available. They come as either skid mount or trailer mount. Both of these options are also available with a sound attenuation enclosure for when the loud sounds of operating equipment are not welcome. Along with all the other incredible features mentioned already, the Appalachian Self-Priming Pump also comes with a digital controller with standard warning shutdown, start/stop function, and emergency stop buttons with easy to access and read diagnostics.
The Appalachian Self-Priming Pump is extremely durable and made with high-quality materials. Considered one of the most versatile self-priming pumps on the market, this pump also comes with FleetLink, a pump monitoring system that allows you to monitor the pump’s operation from anywhere on your farm or ranch. With all these amazing features and incredible benefits, there is no other pump in the world that is better suited for your Planned Water Reclamation System.
For more on the Appalachian Self-Priming Pump by DAE Pumps go to https://www.daepumps.com/products/self-priming-pumps/appalachian-series/
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