Irrigation technology is reducing water use

A recent report by USDA finds water use on irrigated land has significantly declined over the past 50 years.

The Economic Research Service says advancements in well drilling and pumping technology cut water usage per acre by about 25 percent from 1969 to 2018.

Total U.S. water withdrawals for irrigation declined more than 20 percent from 1980 to 2015.

Corn accounts for the largest acreage amongst crops but represents less than 15 percent of total corn harvested in the country. 

The USDA says most land planted for vegetables and orchards is irrigated and 100 percent of rice acres are.

Irrigation usage has also increased in the Mississippi Delta and Northern Plains while declining in the Mountain and Pacific regions over the past 70 years.

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