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Senator Cantwell Tours Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program

United States Senator Maria Cantwell and her staff met with stakeholder groups and toured the Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program (OGWRP) project on October 24. Stakeholders from the East Columbia Basin Irrigation District (ECBID), U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Department of Ecology-Office of the Columbia River, the Columbia Basin Conservation District, the Columbia Basin Sustainable Water Coalition, Adams County, the Washington State Potato Commission, and the Port of Warden joined staff and members of the CBDL Board of Trustees to share progress to date regarding the Odessa Aquifer rescue mission, and identify next steps and innovative solutions to outline needs to transition deep well irrigators off of the rapidly declining aquifer.
After the hour-long meeting, the Senator joined stakeholders for a tour of ECBID’s EL 47.5 pumping plant, which began operating in 2021, and visited OGWRP improvements along the canal system.

Learn more here.

ECBID by the Numbers

Landowners served: 4500
Varieties of crops grown: 89
Percentage of assessed acres under sprinkler irrigation: 84%
Groundwater Replacement Acreage being developed: 73,000
Economic annual value of irrigated crops: $304.7M
East Low design capacity: 4,500cfs
Miles of canals: 86
Miles of laterals: 527
Miles of drains: 917
Pumping plants: 53
Pumping units: 100

Construction is slated to start late next year on another system to deliver Columbia River water to Odessa Subarea farms.

The EL 86.4 system will be 6 to 7 miles long and serve 11 farms on nearly 5,400 acres. Construction cost is estimated at $13 million. The design is in the works, and staff hope to have all the regulatory work done and funding in place to begin construction by October 2023. Overall, about 100 Odessa Subarea farmers face declining water levels in their wells. The goal is to replace the wells with water from the Columbia River.
Learn more here

Mark your calendars and get ready to vote on December 13.
Details and more here.

Jon Erickson, Development Coordinator

Jon brings proven leadership skills and an extensive background in project management to ECBID. As the Development Coordinator, he works with landowner groups throughout the service district to identify needs and facilitate efforts to ensure efficient water delivery and system development. His strong communication skills allow him to work effectively as a liaison between District operations and the landowner groups.

Jon enjoys coaching his kids’ sports teams.  He also sits on many boards and government committees.  Most notably, he is an elected City Councilman.

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