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Agricultural Resource Development dIVISION
Information on Agricultural Water Use in MaineWater Management Planning
Whenever you begin to look into starting or expanding irrigation on your farm, start with developing a water management plan. A plan, on paper, will help you understand your water needs, timing of water use, and the size of the storage or well capacity you may need.
We strongly suggest you go to The NRCS page, http://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/nrcsirrig/ which has a good template to follow. You can enlist the help of your local NRCS office, or contact us at the Maine Department of Agriculture (John Harker) for assistance. For larger projects, you may want to consider contacting a consultant (See the list below).
Permitting New Sources of Water
a pond or drilling a new well must start with a water management
plan, and with a trip to the USDA-NRCS office and Maine Department
of Environmental Protection office http://www.maine.gov/dep/blwq/docstand/nrpapage.htm or
Land Use Regulation Commission office if you are in LURC jurisdiction).
Why? Because most likely you will be impacting a wetland or be close
to a wetland, intermittent stream, etc. If you schedule an appointment
with those agencies at the start, they can guide you through what
you may need for a permit and the timeline for getting a permit. Again,
the NRCS page http://www.me.nrcs.usda.gov/technical/IrrigationPondPermitApplicationProcess.html has
a document that steps you through the process for permitting a pond,
if a wetland is impacted. You can contact us at the Department to
also help guide you. You
may not need a permit in all situations. A number of sites, even
with a wetland involved, may be exempt from the need for a permit. Army
Corps of Engineers oversees all wetland permitting for Maine.
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