Oklahoma Water Resources Center

OSU and City of Chickasha Exploring Opportunities of Recycling Water for Irrigation

4/28/2015

from Oklahoma Farm Report April 28, 2015

Water is a limited resource and Oklahoma State University is looking at ways to better prepare agricultural producers for future water challenges. OSU has established a partnership with the city of Chickasha to utilize waste water from the city's waste water treatment plant. OSU Dean and Vice President of the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources Dr. Tom Coon said OSU's South Central Research Station will utilize the city’s waste water affluent for an irrigation research project.

"Take it right from the waste water treatment plant, after it has been treated, and bring it out to use it in center pivot irrigation system and a lateral system, so we can look at different ways of using that water,” Coon said. “Study - does it have an effect on soil quality, does it have any effect on crop production."

The goal is to have that information made available to farmers the next time Oklahoma is in a drought. Coon said in the future farmers might work with municipalities to use treated waste water for irrigation.

"Our water is limited, we’ve got to make the best use of it we can and this is one of the ways we’ll do that," Coon said.

Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays caught up with Dr. Coon about the project. Listen to the full interview at http://www.oklahomafarmreport.com/wire/news/2015/04/08629_ChickashaOSUWaterPartnership042815_162508.php#.

The vision of the project was created by Senator Ron Justice and other community leaders in Chickasha who first recognized this opportunity in 2007. Dr. Coon said Senator Justice has been a key advocate in the legislature to push for funding of this project. The project is a cooperative effort between OSU, the City of Chickasha, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Transportation and the Department of Agriculture Food and Forestry.

“It’s really one of those kinds of partnerships that we rely to help us do our work and to serve the people of Oklahoma,” Coon said.

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