The Ministry of Agriculture is providing additional support for irrigation development in the province with a $2.5 million investment to help producers finance irrigation infrastructure.
“Developing irrigation capacity is a priority for Saskatchewan,” Agriculture Minister David Marit said. “By supporting producers in the development of irrigable acres, we are creating a sustainable industry that will generate additional opportunities for our province.”
The $2.5 million included in the 2022-23 Budget will allow producers to continue to access up to $500,000 under the Irrigation Development Program, from the previous maximum payment of $300,000. This is the second year the Government of Saskatchewan has provided additional provincial funding to increase the maximum payment under the program, which is offered under the federal-provincial Canadian Agricultural Partnership. The Irrigation Development Program supports the installation of irrigation infrastructure, such as pumps and pipelines, to create a secure water supply to the edge of irrigable parcels of land.
The Government of Saskatchewan also recognizes that irrigators need additional time to complete projects within the current program timelines. In response to these challenges, the program deadline for Irrigation Development pre-approval applications has been extended from January 15, 2022, to December 31, 2022. The program deadline for Irrigation Environmental Efficiency pre-approval applications has been extended from August 1, 2022, to December 31, 2022. Extending the deadline will allow irrigators additional flexibility to complete their projects.
Applicants will have up to 18 months from written project approval to submit a claim under the program. Applicants are encouraged to apply early and submit their claims as soon as their projects are completed.
In the last two years, over 19,000 acres were brought under irrigation in Saskatchewan, with interest in water infrastructure continuing to grow.
“The investments in irrigation development support all sectors of this province and we are pleased the government is committed to growing rural Saskatchewan through irrigation initiatives,” Saskatchewan Irrigation Projects Association Chairman Aaron Gray said. “This funding will help to sustainably develop more irrigable acres in this province to create a more prosperous future for every citizen.”