Farmers switch to electric irrigation - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Farmers switch to electric irrigation

May 24, 2007

Lee County --  South Georgia farmers are keeping drilling companies busy with irrigation system repairs.

Some irrigation systems are going from diesel to electric.

Because farmers are having to run their irrigation systems nearly non-stop during the drought to keep their crops alive, the sky high price of diesel fuel is costing more than they can make.

Many are switching to electric pumps where they can. Harvey Drilling owner Ryan Thompson said "hopefully if we get some rains in, they can slow their systems down where they are not irrigating all the time. Maybe they can still make some money. If they are pumping water and using diesel to pump it with, there is no money to be made."

Thompson said a diesel pump will cost about $18 an hour for fuel, while the electric pump will cost only about seven dollars an hour to run.

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