The power outage didn’t darken the Saskatchewan Irrigation Conference in Moose Jaw yesterday.

Participants gave their presentations by candlelight without the use of technology.

The lights were back on in time for the banquet which featured a panel discussion on Irrigation Development and financing major water projects.

Jillian Brown a Researcher with the U of S talked about some of the research she’s been doing into the economic benefits of irrigation.

She says investment in irrigation has a multiplier effect impacting not only producer returns but community growth as well.

"For every $1 invested a $1.44 is brought back in sales that are generated in the different industries that are impacted by irrigation development.  As a result, when a new infrastructure project gets underway and money is invested in the pipeline, in electrical equipment, and consulting fees it has that rippling effect."

She notes since the benefits extend beyond the producer, it’s not fair to suggest that they (the producer) should have to spend 100% of the cost of developing the infrastructure and take on the entire risk.

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