Water Issues Important to Area Residents Topic of March 25 Conference

Water Issues Important to Area Residents Topic of March 25 Conference

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Imperial, NE – Water-related information important to the livelihoods of area farmers and residents including an overview from the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office of lawsuits from surface water users will be presented on March 25 at a conference in Imperial.

The first annual “State of the Republican Basin” water conference is being organized by the Upper Republican NRD and will include experts on water policy, legal issues and water-saving tools such as soil moisture probes. The event is free, open to the public and will include a free, catered lunch. It will run from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. on March 25 and be held at the new Chase County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall.

The conference is designed to help attendees understand opportunities, risks and hydrology in the Republican Basin by providing a comprehensive overview of several water-related issues. Vendors that sell soil moisture probes will be on hand and attendees will be able to apply for cost-share for probes.

Please RSVP via email to Nate Jenkins at natejenkins@urnrd.org or call him at 308-882-5173 by March 18.

Following is an abbreviated version of the conference schedule. A conference flyer with a more complete description is available in the link at the bottom of this article.

8:30 a.m.: Registration

9: Welcome and overview, Jasper Fanning, Ph.D., URNRD General Manager.

9:15: View of Republican River water issues from state lawmakers, State Sen. Dan Hughes.

9:45: Water lawsuits in the Republican Basin, Justin Lavene, Chief of Nebraska Attorney General Office’s Bureau of Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources.

10:45: Stream flow impacts from water use and reduced runoff, Jim Schneider, Ph.D., Water Resources Team Senior Scientist, Olsson Associates; and former Deputy Director, Nebraska Department of Natural Resources.

11:30: Long term water planning by stakeholders from across the Republican Basin to maintain economic viability and water availability, Jennifer Schellpeper, Division Head, Nebraska Department of Natural Resources Integrated Water Management.

1: Managing ground and surface water together to benefit water users and reduce conflict, Jesse Bradley, former Natural Resources Program Director, Neb. Department of Natural Resources.

1:45: Overview of cost share available for practices designed to increase water use efficiency, Andy Keep, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service District Conservationist.

2:30: Maximizing the use of soil moisture probes and factors to consider when purchasing and using them, Daran Rudnick, Ph.D., UNL Irrigation/Water Management Specialist.

3:15: Overview of the URNRD’s rules and regulations regarding irrigation as we enter the 2016 irrigation season, Dirk Dinnel, URNRD Assistant Manager.

4: Closing comments from Jasper Fanning.