Environmental Benefits of a Drip Irrigation System

Drip irrigation systems aren’t just a time-saver; they’re also eco-friendly. Here are ways drip irrigation is helping our planet.   

Drip irrigation is the watering innovation that transformed modern agriculture. It is the most direct way to deliver water and nutrients to plants and has been shown to save time and money. However, efficiency and cost-effectiveness are not the only benefits. Below are some of the ways drip irrigation systems positively affect the environment. Here’s a hint: it’s all about the savings.   

Saving water

Drip irrigation is estimated to increase water efficiency by 40-70%. The goal of drip irrigation is precision. Since water is delivered to plants slowly and accurately, drip irrigation reduces waste and eliminates runoff. This results in less water lost to evaporation and decreases soil erosion. A drip irrigation system can save as much as 80% of the water typically used in other irrigation systems.   

Saving fertilizer

Watering and fertilizing plants can happen at the same time with drip irrigation. Fertilizer injectors installed in drip irrigation systems deliver liquid nutrients directly to plants’ roots with almost zero waste. When fertilizer use is not managed properly, it can become a pollutant to surrounding plants, animals, and bodies of water. Drip irrigation doesn’t distribute excess fertilizer. This measure prevents any adverse effects on the surrounding environment.    

Saving energy

The level of pumping in an irrigation system is related to the energy needed for the system to operate. Drip irrigation pumps require less power to run because they are low-pressure systems. Low-pressure systems use less fuel and, therefore, less energy. Compared to high-pressure systems, like sprinkler irrigation, drip irrigation can reduce energy costs by as much as 50%. They also provide more consistent amounts of moisture which benefits most plants.    

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions

Because drip irrigation requires less energy to function, it is shown to have a reduced output of greenhouse gases compared to other irrigation systems. Studies done at the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources’ Desert Research and Extension Center found that drip irrigation in alfalfa reduced per-yield soil carbon dioxide emissions by 59% and reduced emissions of other types of greenhouse gases. This reduction of harmful gases is perhaps the most significant benefit of having a drip irrigation system.   

At Watermaster, we are happy to share more about the benefits of drip irrigation. If you feel like doing your part for the environment, call today to ask our pro employees about a drip irrigation system for your home.