In 2017, CFFO hosted a workshop that brought together provincial stakeholders in water stewardship, including farmers, food processing, municipalities, conservation authorities, environmental NGOs, government representatives, and academia. Presentations focused on water policy and technology. The workshop offered a space for stakeholders to share ideas, foster communication networks, and explore opportunities for Ontario through agricultural water stewardship.
Where Does Agriculture Fit in the Water Governance Landscape?
Dr. Rob de Loë, University of Waterloo
The water governance landscape has changed dramatically in recent years and farmers have major roles and responsibilities.
Sub-Surface Drip Irrigation Results on Corn
Peter White, University of Guelph
White reports on field studies for sub-surface drip irrigation (SDI) conducted in southwestern Ontario, with a review of the technical requirements and cost-benefits analyses.
Ontario Climate and Agriculture Assessment Framework
Al Douglas, Ontario Centre for Climate Impacts and Adaptation Resources
Based on climate change modelling through to the 2050s, Douglas reports on water management needs and development opportunities for two Ontario commodities and regions: forage in the northern Clay Belt and corn in Chatham-Kent.
Groundwater Monitoring and Management
Ryan Post, Nottawasaga Conservation Authority
Post reports on three recent groundwater monitoring programs in the Nottawasaga watershed. Data collection from these projects is useful for developing low level response, water taking permits, development reviews, and BMP assessment.
University of Waterloo, Bishops University & Credit Valley Conservation
Students and staff from three institutions share the results of their research in subsurface phosphorus transport in agricultural soil, soil loss through gulley erosion, and real-time water quality monitoring.
Australia’s Water Taking Allocation Process
Brent Taylor, Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change
Taylor presents his research into water allocation planning during a drought crisis in South Australia. He describes markers for successful collaboration.
Evolution of Water Policy in a Dry Land
Brenda Dyack, Agri-Food Economic Systems
Dyack describes the market-based water allocation system in Australia and examines the complicated work of assessing the economic impacts at play when environmental and agricultural water needs hang in the balance.
Government Perspective on Water Policy
Brent Taylor, MOECC, & Sharon Bailey, OMAFRA
Taylor delivers an overview of water taking governance in Ontario; Bailey presents the work of the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs in water governance, including drainage law and Lake Erie phosphorus reduction.
Water Policy Options in the Canadian/Ontario Context
Experts Sharon Bailey (Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs), Brenda Dyack (Agri-Food Economic Systems), and Brent Taylor (Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change) discuss issues in water governance.
Moisture Sensors and Data Loggers
Peter White, University of Guelph
White offers a review of numerous tools used to track soil moisture, including the time domain reflectometer, the tensiometer, and the capacitance sensor.
Water Saving Project with Vegetable Growers
Bruce Kelly, Farm & Food Care
Through the Water Smart Farms Project, a carrot washing station in Holland Marsh and a Bradford greenhouse retrofitted their operations, diverting thousands of gallons of water from being wasted.
Watering Systems in Areas of Restricted Access
Doug Plaunt, Kelln Solar
For farmers close to municipal water sources, access to water for cattle is simple. But farmers further afield have to get creative. Plaunt reviews watering system options for cattle kept outdoors year-round.
Technology Options for the Ontario Landscape
Technology questions are fielded by Bruce Kelly (Farm and Food Care), Doug Plaunt (Kelln Solar), Ryan Post (Nottawasaga Conservation Authority), and Peter White (University of Guelph).