Drought Resilience

Payments and Savings from Electricity Use On Irrigation Pumps

Increasing utility rates, limited surface water, and SGMA lead to increased costs for pumping water

These factors continue to impact production costs and regulatory pressure regardless of how efficiently pumps are managed. To stay competitive, various tools will need to be used to maintain and improve profitability. Virridy provides scalable, satellite connected, real-time water and energy intelligence and access to Demand Response revenue with pump automation. By partnering with Wexus Technologies software we’ve been able to save managers thousands of dollars on their pumping costs per year.

Virridy: Into The Green

 

Monitor

Track well depth, pump efficiency, and utility costs regularly using reliable sensors on a near-real time basis, eliminating truck rolls and labor costs

Control

Reduce labor pressure and operating costs with scalable pump automation

Profit

Turn irrigation pumps into revenue centers via Demand Response programs and lower operational spend with energy saved, labor hours reduced, and risks avoided

Track & Analyze Usage

Leverage cloud-based machine learning to derive insights for management actions that make a difference to your bottom line

Report

Provide regulatory agencies all necessary data on water & energy without gaps in coverage

Project Management

Hub and spoke design approach means modular installations over a phased horizon by water manager’s own staff creates flexibility

Lodi Farming Logo

Lodi Farming

“Their system works like it’s supposed to. I have more control over my pumping costs and that’s key under SGMA” – Lodi Farming

Lodi Farming in Lodi, CA specializes in a range of crops grown to the highest quality. When they learned of the chance to save money on their energy costs related to pumping, they reached out to learn more about the savings program offered by Wexus Technologies in partnership with Virridy. Following a remote demonstration, an energy audit, and a simple plan for implementation, Virridy installed a pilot at 5 pump locations in a single day, including a required pump tests performed with no extra time dedicated from Lodi Farming staff. This process from beginning to end took less than 3 months and resulted in crucial energy savings they could enjoy during a year where groundwater pumping was necessary due to a lack of surface water available.

Lodi Farming is now in a strong position to add additional pumps to the program to increase their savings, easily upgrade to include controls that take advantage of Demand Response revenue, and rest easy with detailed knowledge on their pump use for improved management and reporting.

Partners in Groundwater Innovation

The Freshwater Trust (TFT), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit working to protect and restore freshwater ecosystems, partnered with IBM Research and Virridy Inc. to pilot technologies which can accurately monitor and track groundwater use in one of the largest and most at risk aquifers in North America. Additional research support will be provided by the University of Colorado Boulder.

Jointly funded by the Water Foundation and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the project’s scientists and engineers demonstrated how the blockchain and remote Internet of Things (IoT) sensors can accurately measure groundwater usage transparently, and in real-time.

The sensors transmit water extraction data to orbiting satellites and then to the IBM Blockchain Platform hosted in the IBM Cloud. The blockchain records of all data exchanges or transactions made in an append-only, immutable ledger. The blockchain also uses “smart contracts,” whereby transactions are automatically executed when the conditions are matched.

Through a web-based dashboard, water consumers, including farmers; investors and regulators will all be able to monitor and track the use of groundwater to demonstrate how sustainable pumping levels can be achieved through the trading of groundwater use shares in the State of California. Individual users who require groundwater amounts beyond their share will be able to “purchase” groundwater shares from users who do not require all of their supply at a market-regulated rate. This will become critical in the years ahead as the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) begins to produce change in California (continued below)

Aerial-Photo-Sac

SGMA mandated the creation of Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (GSAs), local groups that are responsible for ensuring regional groundwater supplies are sustainably managed. The GSAs are charged with developing and implementing a plan to make their local groundwater usage sustainable by 2040.

Since 2016, TFT has built multiple programs in the basin. In response to another bill, Senate Bill 88, TFT developed a measurement method for surface water diversion that addresses the unique qualities of the Northern Delta region. In 2017, 148 surface water diversions covering more than 29,000 farmed acres in the region — including wine grapes, pears, corn, alfalfa, safflower, tomatoes and wheat — had enrolled in the five-year study. For groundwater concerns in the same area, TFT helped support the formation of the Northern Delta Groundwater Sustainability Agency. This means 17 local agencies formed into one integrated agency and have begun work on a unified plan for sustainably managing groundwater use across a single aquifer to achieve outcomes together rather than work at cross-purposes. These agencies are understaffed, so TFT provides the capacity to gather and analyze data and develop effective sustainability measures.