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Elephant Butte Irrigation District will soon use $75,000 in federal funds to convert open canals to covered and metered piping that will enhance community safety while also conserving water.
The project will consist of nearly 1,200 linear feet of underground conveyance infrastructure enhanced by aboveground concrete check and diversion boxes, similar to many that have been in use in downtown residential areas for decades. Total project cost is estimated at $191,097.
The project – which is supported by the Lower Rio Grande Regional Water Plan – is designed to result in the reduction of seepage losses and improved delivery to farmers. The conserved water should allow the district to more reliably deliver water to existing customers, and the resulting pressurized system will allow agricultural customers to make future on-farm irrigation efficiency improvements.
The project is one of three in New Mexico announced last week. Bernalillo County will receive $28,156 and Zia Pueblo will receive $73,000.
In all, 52 projects in 13 western states will share $3.3 million in WaterSMART grants for small-scale water efficiency improvements
Selected projects for the Small-Scale Water Efficiency Project grants received up to $75,000, meaning the EBID allocation is at the maximum level authorized by the program. Each selected entity must provide at least 50 percent in matching funds.