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Water Pumps for Irrigation – Summer 2018

The Importance of Irrigation in a Growing World.

The U.K has so far seen one of the driest summers on record, with United Utilities announcing a hosepipe ban. We have seen an increase in the number of water pumps being sold for irrigation purposes, whether that be for gardens, or on a larger scale. We decided to look at the history of irrigation and how it is used today.

History of Irrigation

Irrigation is one of the most important human processes in the world, due to its relationship with food, feed and fuel production. It can be defined as the systematic and artificial supply of water for agricultural and horticultural uses to promote healthy growth and a higher quality yield. Evidence of irrigation dates as far back as 6000 BC, where its use has been identified, through archaeological investigation, in Ancient Egypt and Ancient Persia.

The Current State of Affairs

In more recent history, the emergence of diesel and electric motors in the middle of the 20th century meant groundwater could be pumped out of major aquifers, for the first time in history. The advancement of technology has enabled humans to utilise every source of water available. In today’s world, globally, 70% of all water taken from rivers, lakes and groundwater sources is used to feed and irrigate crops and livestock. This alarming statistic shows how reliant we are on irrigation, a reliance which is only going to increase when the world’s population is projected to swell to over 9 billion by 2050.

It isn’t just freshwater systems that are under pressure, but also the availability of arable land to be able to grow crops. We are now in a position where there is little arable land that hasn’t already been utilised for agriculture. Moreover, we are often pumping our aquifers quicker than they can recharge, causing immense strain on our freshwater resources and increasing the amount of surface water available, a major contributor to flooding.

Sustainable Irrigation

The picture painted above shows just how needed sustainable, effective irrigation is. The rise in dominance of factors like global population, biofuel usage and global food consumption all add strain on our water resources and irrigation.

In a more relatable context, the UK has seen incredibly warm and dry weather for much of this summer. If this dry spell continues, we will eventually reach a water shortage. To prolong this and give more time for the water stores to be replenished, efficient irrigation is needed.

One way to do this is utilise the advancements in technology, especially pump technology, that are available today.

Divertron
Divertron

Some pumps, such as the Divertron Submersible Pump and the Umbra Pompe Acuafluss Submersible Pump, possess integral electronics where integral pressure regulators start and stop the pump automatically when a valve or tap is opened/closed. They also stop the pump automatically on the event of dry running which, normally, would render the pump unusable.

The measures installed on these pumps enable efficient use of water whilst irrigating. Their design is tailored to the agricultural industry, as they possess high heads and high submersible depths. The efficient irrigation offered by such pumps reduces the environmental impacts that excessive irrigation can cause. Such problems include increased soil salinity and the washing of pollutants, and sediment, into rivers, which damages freshwater ecosystems and the species that live there.

On a much smaller scale, water pumps can be used for watering plants, lawns or gardens. A popular model is then FL On Demand pump, which will turn on at the pull of a hose trigger, and off again when it is released, effectively providing water ‘on-demand’. These are ideal for use with water butts and will fit a standard hose.

If you require any assistance on which water pump may work best for your irrigation needs, please contact us on 0115 9870358.


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