Agriculture experts look at conserving water in the Panhandle

Conserving water for farming in High Plains

On Saturday, dozens of residents and farmers met at the Downtown Amarillo Library to discuss the future of the agricultural water supply in the Panhandle.

Panelists discussed government policies, scientific research, and farming practices.

Experts talked about specific ways to save water from Panhandleâ??s main source of water for agriculture, the Ogallala aquifer. They discussed options such as new technologies and planting alternate crops.

"For farmers in our area, the most important source of that water is the Ogallala Aquifer. We know it's a finite resource that won't last forever," said James Hunt, KGNC Argi-Business Director.

"When we add wheat into the cropping system, it will collect residues and we can collect rainfall and store it so the following crop we don't have to use as much irrigation water," said Nolan Clark with the Panhandle Water Planning Group.

Agriculture experts at the meeting said 2/3 of the remaining water in the High Plains is located North of the Canadian River. They said they hope to only use about 50% of the remaining water in the most saturated areas in the next 50 years.

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