Priority Issues for IA Agriculture Members:

  1. Research
  2. Farm bill
  3. Energy
  4. Water quality
  5. Infrastructure

Source: IA 2009 Agricultural Member Survey

Public Policy Issues


The Irrigation Association believes that quantifying the cost savings and total value of efficient irrigation is critical to adoption of water-saving technologies, products and practices, as well as long-term sustainability of water resources.
Specifically, IA supports research that:

  • Establishes benchmarks for irrigation products and applications.
  • Calculates water and cost savings from irrigation system enhancements.
  • Defines best practices for efficient water use and water resource planning.
  • Quantifies the economic and ecosystem benefits of community green spaces and irrigated land.

USDA – Agricultural Research Service Water Availability & Watershed Management Action Plan

In September 2010, the Irrigation Association participated in a two-day strategy meeting with the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service to help develop the 2011 – 2015 Action Plan for the Water Availability and Watershed Management National Program.
The national program is organized into four problem areas:

  • Water management
  • Erosion, sedimentation and water quality processes
  • Assessing conservation effects in agricultural watersheds
  • Watershed, ecosystem, and landscape processes and management

To read more about the ARS Water Availability and Watershed Management National Program and its five-year strategic plan, please click here.

Agriculture Research Priorities

In 2009, IA surveyed its members about issues facing agriculture irrigation. Responses overwhelmingly identified research to quantify the importance and value of agriculture irrigation as this member segment’s top concern.
To address this core member group’s concerns, IA:

  • Actively promotes participation in the U.S. Census of Agriculture’s Farm and Ranch Irrigation Survey.
  • Works closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service and Economic Research Service to investigate opportunities to advance irrigation research.
  • Encourages research by government, academia and industry firms on identified agriculture priorities:
    • Irrigation water management practices and systems.
    • Wastewater utilization on irrigated land.
    • Irrigation standards and evaluation guidelines.
    • Irrigation sensors, controls and information technologies.
    • Irrigation system manufacturing and recycling.
Learn more about IA’s agriculture research priorities.