Water Well Journal

May 2016

Water Well Journal

Issue link: http://read.dmtmag.com/i/668983

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Page 18 of 77

W ith extreme drought conditions in California and plummeting prices for some crops, people may be inclined to view cautiously the future of the irrigation drilling market. Many states—particularly in the West and Midwest—are limiting new irrigation well construction and holding agricultural producers to tighter limits on water usage. Yet when all is said and done, food still needs to be grown for an ever-increasing population. This month, four professionals work- ing in the irrigation market share their perspectives on the future of the irriga- tion industry, how the political climate affects it, and how they're adapting. Water Well Journal: What is your biggest concern about the irriga- tion market and groundwater today? Dan Mackin: First, you're always wor- ried about drought, water usage, and ac- tually getting permits for wells. It's not as bad in the Midwest right now, but it's always an issue. The biggest issue, though, is grain prices. That's really driving the industry right now. The dol- lars out there to spend on irrigation are not what they were. Tom Downey, CWD/PI: My biggest concern continues to be where we are going with the regulations. I've felt the groundwater user has been portrayed as the bad guy on the block mainly be- cause in most areas groundwater is so- called "free." All water users need to look at it as a reservoir and allow it to recharge and replenish in the wet years so it gets you through the dry years. Darryl Cannon: We have a highly developed irrigation well market in Florida. Many areas of the state are using more than 100% of the sustainable discharge of the aquifer, which limits drilling opportunities. New restrictions Our Roundtable Darryl Cannon at David Cannon Well Drilling in Parrish, Florida Tom Downey, CWD/PI, CEO of Downey Drilling Inc. in Lexington, Nebraska Dan Mackin, Senior Sales Engineer, North American Groundwater Development at Flowserve Pump Co. in Deweese, Nebraska Chris Preston, Residential Water Products Manager at Goulds Water Technology in Morton Grove, Illinois IRRIGATION continues on page 16 Job sites such as this one from Downey Drilling Inc. dot the national landscape. Irrigated agri- culture accounts for 65% of the groundwater pumped every day in the United States. Downey Drilling is headquartered in Lexington, Nebraska. Photo submitted by Tom Downey, CWD/PI. WWJ May 2016 15 Twitter @WaterWellJournl Darryl Cannon Dan Mackin Tom Downey, CWD/PI Chris Preston (COVER STORY) An Inside Look An Inside Look Groundwater professionals share their perspectives on the state of the irrigation industry. By Jennifer Strawn

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