Bureau of Reclamation announces $29.1 million in efficiency funding


The US Bureau of Reclamation has issued $29.1 million in grants to enhance energy and water conservation in 13 states.

The grants will be issued through the WaterSMART programme to 45 projects in two categories.

The first category will fund 28 projects from 11 states, of which each state will receive $7.5 million so projects can have $300,000 to support their programmes.

Projects under the first round will have a timeframe of two years.

The second category will support 17 projects from 7 states – will provide $21.5 million so that a single project can have $1.5 million in funding within a period of three years.

For instance, the Colorado River Indian Tribes will use its $250,000 share to modernise its Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition system to enable enhanced irrigation water control and management. The project is expected to result in annual water savings of 10,000 acre-feet that is currently lost to operational spills and evaporation.

The Mission Springs Water District, located in southern California, will combine $300,000 in federal funding with $3.4 million of its own funding to upgrade 12,967 residential water meters to advanced meters that help inform about leaks, breaks and other unusual use patterns.

“Existing water and hydropower resources are being strained as our infrastructure ages and population grows. The WaterSMART programme provides critical support to western communities, helping to best conserve limited water resources,” said Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt.

“These water and energy efficiency grants help increase hydropower production and contribute to water supply reliability in the western United States,” said Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman. “WaterSMART is an opportunity for communities to use water more effectively and reduce risk for future water conflict.”

Learn more about all of the selected projects at http://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/weeg.