On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program (OFIEP)
Our role as a key Delivery in OFIEP
With our professional and highly diverse team we were chosen as a key Delivery Partner in securing funding available from the On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program (OFIEP) to irrigators.
We delivered projects to assist irrigators in adapting to the future with reduced water availability due to climate change and drought conditions. Projects delivered included upgrades to existing systems and conversion to new irrigation practices, enabling irrigators to reduce water losses and manage water allocation more efficiently.
We facilitated the successful delivery of over $67 million in project funding to irrigators in South Australia, New South Wales and Victoria, providing benefits to irrigators, their communities and the environment.
We successfully bid for OFIEP funding totalling $46.8 million to support 24 on-farm projects involving:
- redesigning infrastructure to improve surface irrigation systems
- upgrades to bankless channels, flood layouts, drainage and reuse systems, and
- upgrades to spray irrigation and direct delivery irrigation.
To date, 78 percent of this funding has been delivered across the 24 projects. The completion of these projects is expected to save 31 GL with approximately 17.5 GL to be returned to the Commonwealth for environmental use.
We delivered $11.5 million across 19 projects in Round 3 of OFIEP. The projects included laser grading and irrigation infrastructure upgrades and/or design projects through New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia to support farmers.
A further $6.2 million was delivered across 20 projects in Round 4 of OFIEP. The projects undertaken in that round included:
- system redesign
- installation of moisture monitoring probes, and pipe and riser systems
- laser levelling to surface flood irrigation, and
- upgrades to surface and sub surface drop irrigation methods.
In total, the OFIEP projects we have managed are expected to save over 45 GL of water, with approximately 27 GL of water being returned to the Commonwealth for environmental use.
Savings will be gained through activities including:
- laser grading which increase efficiencies in water use and reduces the instances of pooling and water wastage
- fitting variable speed pumps which reduces the power required per ML pumped
- installation of irrigation monitoring sensors resulting in water efficiencies
- upgrading drainage water recycling systems, and
- enclosing pipes and riser systems which reduce farm evaporation and seepage
EXPECTED TO SAVE OVER 45 GL OF WATER
Our clients say
The following is an individual irrigator’s story that highlights the success of OFIEP.
Dehne Vinnicombe, Dairy Farmer, Jarlkin, Victoria
Dehne’s project was approved under Round 3 of OFIEP through Waterfind’s sub-project: Laser grading and irrigation infrastructure upgrade and redesign.
Dehne and the contractors worked hard (including in very hot conditions) finishing all the landforming, completing the re-use system and installing new channels.
Benefits of Dehne’s project include:
- increased production and reduced irrigation (11.6ML/ha to 8.7ML/ha)
- water savings of 2.9ML/ha across all fields, and
- a re-use system that allows the capture and reuse of runoff
Dehne has returned 218ML of water to the Commonwealth for environmental use.
Dehne speaks highly of the program and recommends to others to participate in any similar programs that may be offered in the future.