Drainage water recycling “an emerging practice”
The director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center is excited about the potential of drainage water recycling.
Matt Helmers says researchers in Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, and North Dakota are looking at ways to capture and reuse water, like a rain barrel, but on a much larger scale.
“What we’re doing is working to capture rainwater, whether that be some surface runoff or maybe more so drainage water, capturing (and) storing that, and having that available for supplemental irrigation for the corn or soybean crop.”
He calls drainage water recycling an “emerging practice.”
“I’m an engineer, and from an engineering standpoint I think we can engineer this. But we really need to look at how economically feasible it is, and what might be some of the water quality benefits of it.”
Helmers tells Brownfield in a nutshell it’s about capturing water that might otherwise be transporting nutrients downstream and using it to enhance crop production.