Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Three Sisters Irrigation District On Farm & Renewable Energy

Counties: Deschutes and Jefferson

Primary Resource Concern: 

  • Source water depletion - Inefficient irrigation water use
  • Inefficient energy use - Equipment and Facilities
  • Source water depletion - Surface water depletion 

Project Description
The on-farm component of this project encompasses 40 projects, over 379 acres, in the Upper District. The RCPP Program will allow farmers in the Upper District to pipe private laterals, thereby providing access to pressurized water from the District's pipelines. Pressurized water will eliminate electrical pumps that use over 450,000 kWh of electricity annually. Funding partners include Deschutes River Conservancy using Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB) and Pelton Fund,(PGE & Tribes) monies. TSID and it's farmers will be contributing in kind and cash. TSID completed construction of the Watson Net/Meter Micro Hydro Demonstration Project with it's partners NRCS, Bonneville Environmental Foundation, and Oregon Department of Energy. A feasibility study was conducted by the Oregon Dept. of Energy to determine the potential for 60 on farm hydro net metering projects. TSID will be assessing and ranking these 60 projects for future construction. TSID will be working with renewable energy advocates to remove barriers that were identified during the study in the next 3 years. TSID will finish piping the whole District with this last request of $300,000 of RCPP funding.

Conservation Practices Offered

  • Irrigation Pipeline (430)  
  • Sprinkler System (442)  
  • Structure for Water Control (587)  
  • Irrigation System, Microirrigation (441)  
  • Irrigation Water Management (449)  
  • Critical Area Planting (342)  
  • Riparian Herbaceous Cover (390)  
  • Stream Habitat Improvement and Management (395)  
  • Aquatic Organism Passage (396)  
  • Streambank and Shoreline Protection (580)  
  • Soil Health Testing (216)  

Collaborating Partners:

  • Three Sisters Irrigation District
  • Deschutes River Conservancy
  • Deschutes Soil and Water Conservation District
  • NRCS Oregon
  • Private Landowners

Application Questions
NRCS uses prioritization questions to evaluate applications for this initiative. See the list of workload prioritization questions on the Oregon EQIP page. Ranking questions below will also apply.

Ranking Questions

  1. Will this application result in over 8-acre inches per acre of water conservation?
  2. IWM will be applied at greater than the Basic level including use of Agrimet or equivalent for crop needs, soil moisture measurement, and record keeping?
  3. Will the project convert from flood irrigation to sprinkler or drip?
  4. Will the project convert private open ditch to pipe?
  5. Will project provide pressurized water to the farm to save pumping energy?
  6. Will the project benefit wildlife in Whychus creek by eliminating passage barriers and/or restoring floodplain and channel habitat?

How to Apply
If you're interested in applying for this program, please contact:

Marc Thalaker, Three Sisters Irrigation District Manager

Lars Santana, Deschutes County NRCS District Conservationist