Study Shows Benefits of Irrigation to State

UNDATED - The ability of farmers and ranchers to irrigate Nebraska crops contributed $11-billion to Nebraska’s economy last year. That finding comes through a new study chartered by Nebraska Farm Bureau to identify the importance of water for irrigation during one of the worst droughts in the state’s history. Nebraska Farm Bureau President Steve Nelson says the study, conducted by the Des Moines research firm Decision Innovation Solutions, provides an estimate of the total impact that irrigated agriculture had on the Nebraska economy in 2012. The study showed that Nebraska would have had about 31,000 fewer jobs without irrigation. Every inch of water placed on an acre of cropland generates roughly $100 of economic benefit to the state.