Irrigation Management is important since it helps determine future Irrigation expectations. Irrigation is the artificial exploitation and distribution of water at project level aiming at application of water at field level to agricultural crops in dry areas or in periods of scarce rainfall to assure or improve crop production.
The goal of irrigation management is to use water in the most profitable way at sustainable production levels. For production agriculture this generally means supplementing precipitation with irrigation. In recent years we have seen declines in groundwater levels, almost statewide. Much of the State of Nebraska is considered fully or over-appropriated. This means that in those over-appropriated areas there will be no new development of irrigated acres. Some Natural Resources Districts have established pumping restrictions for irrigation water. Increases in fuel prices means that pumping extra irrigation water increases irrigation expenses without increasing income. High nitrate levels have been found in many areas of the state. Nitrates in drinking water can be attributed, in part, to over-application of nitrogen fertilizer and/or over- irrigation.