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Research Updates - Advancing water use efficiency in the Coleambally Irrigation District [16 August 2007]

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The core objectives of the project are to increase the return per unit of applied water and reduce the environmental impact of irrigation in the project area through the roll out of precision irrigation systems that allow the irrigators to more precisely match water application to crop water needs... The project will incorporate: soil moisture and climate sensors to monitor the water balance in their soils and crops and make decisions about when to irrigate and how much and at what rate to apply water to their fields; and control systems and storages to provide users with greater control over the rate and timing of irrigation applications... CICL proposes to overcome these barriers by: providing a significant up-front cost subsidy for the deployment of the infrastructure for precision irrigation systems; avoiding the need for individual irrigators to acquire, deploy and maintain the technologies by offering a full service precision irrigation package that will be deployed and maintained by CICL and partner organisations; providing the near on-demand water supply service to the farm gate that is required in order to precisely match water; and most importantly, training and educating irrigators in the use of precision irrigation technologies and providing water balance and crop information in a user friendly format...