The California Department of Food and Agriculture's Office of Environmental Farming and Innovation announced yesterday it has selected 11 organizations to receive a combined $5 million in Water Efficiency Technical Assistance funding.  

The Coalition for Urban and Rural Environmental Stewardship was awarded a full $500,000 for a software that would measure and identify performance problems in Stanislaus and San Joaquin County orchards and vineyards.

California State University and the University of California secured three grants that ranged from $460,000 to $499,000. Conservation districts from Yolo, Sutter, Ventura, Imperial, Santa Cruz, Monterey, San Diego and Merced counties were the lead applicants in six more grants. 

The smallest award, $239,000, went to the University of California Cooperative Extension Service for Imperial County for Irrigation and Nutrient management training for producers in that county. 

The CDFA began accepting applications for WETA late November of last year and the process closed on February 3. 

“Many of these organizations are already essential resources in serving California growers with their on farm-irrigation use efficiency projects,” CDFA secretary Karen Ross said in a release. “This program will expand the reach of these organizations at a time when water use efficiency and nutrient management are so important to agricultural resilience.”

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