The Irrigation Efficiency Program supports improved energy and water efficiencies in irrigation systems. The program provides eligible applicants who meet program criteria, with a rebate for converting low efficiency or high-pressure irrigation systems to high efficiency, low pressure irrigation systems.
Each eligible applicant can receive up to 30 per cent of eligible costs, to a maximum program payment of $50,000 over the five-year program term of the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP) from April 1, 2023, to March 31, 2028. The deadline for submitting applications for rebate is March 31, 2028.
Irrigation efficiency project improvements must be fully constructed and operational before a rebate will be issued. No interim payments will be made. Program payments are subject to a minimum rebate of $250.
- Primary agricultural producers (individual, partnership, co-operative or corporation) who can demonstrate a minimum $50,000 of gross farm income in Saskatchewan in the year of application or the year prior to the application. Individual applicants must be at least 18 years of age.
- First Nation Bands in the Province of Saskatchewan; or
- Irrigation districts (within the meaning of The Irrigation Act, 2019) in Saskatchewan that is approved by the ministry.
If you are an irrigation district in Saskatchewan, please contact the Crops and Irrigation Branch at 306-867-5500 to discuss further.
Our rebate programs allow flexibility for new entrants to become eligible if they are confident they will be able to provide proof of meeting the gross farm income threshold within the five-year term of Sustainable CAP. Complete the below New Entrant Self-Assessment for details:
New Entrant Self-Assessment:
- Did you earn less than $50,000 in gross farm income in the year of or the year prior to the application?
- Have you recently (roughly within the last five years) made a significant purchase of land, livestock, or other investment for the purpose of farming, which will allow you to generate $50,000 in gross farm income by March of 2028?
- Have you operated a farm or ranch and earned farm income for five years or less, either as a sole operator or with other related entities who have operated a farm or ranch for five years or less?
If you answered yes to all of these questions, please contact the Agriculture Knowledge Centre at 1-866-457-2377 and ask to be connected with an agriculture programs specialist to discuss whether or not you are eligible as a new entrant.
First Nation producers may have distinct characteristics reflecting regulatory, operational, cultural and other factors. Our programs are designed to allow for flexibility to reduce barriers and ensure accessibility. If you are interested in applying for programs and have questions about the application process or eligibility criteria, please contact one of our Building and Strengthening Indigenous Supports (BASIS) specialists or contact the Agriculture Knowledge Centre at 1-866-457-2377 and ask to be connected with one of our BASIS team members or the Crops and Irrigation Branch at 306-867-5500 for irrigation development projects.
Eligibility Criteria/Other Parameters
- Project (and any expenses) must have commenced after October 1, 2022.
- Producers who own, lease or rent property where livestock and poultry are grown, bred, kept, raised, displayed, assembled or disposed require a Saskatchewan Premises Identification (PID) number.
- Persons related to an eligible applicant will be subject to the program’s maximum funding cap for that eligible applicant. Related applicants include:
- The maximum amount that may be paid to an eligible applicant, including persons related to an eligible applicant, may not exceed the maximum funding cap per applicant/related entity over the life of the program.
- “Related applicants” include but are not limited to spouses, business partners, relatives living in the same residence, individuals/entities which have controlling interests in more than one operation and operations that are not legally, financially or operationally sufficiently independent of other entities.
- In determining whether a person/entity is a related applicant, the ministry may consider the following factors:
- whether the person/entity is engaged in a common enterprise with the applicant as a corporate affiliate or subsidiary, partner, member of a joint venture, trustee of a trust or estate in which the eligible applicant has a substantial beneficial interest or any other relationship which evidences an intention to share the profits or risk of loss of the operation with the eligible applicant;
- whether the person/entity makes operational decisions in respect of the operation or makes those decisions jointly or in common with the eligible applicant;
- whether the person is responsible to ensure that day-to-day operations are completed respecting the operation;
- whether the person/entity and the applicant have access to common assets such as land, machinery, processing equipment, crop storage or animal handling facilities used in the operation;
- whether the person/entity files separate income and expense statements for income tax purposes;
- whether the person/entity maintains separate farm or business accounting records;
- whether the person maintains a separate bank, credit union or trust company account;
- whether the person has a separate Goods and Services Tax number;
- whether the person/entity has any other financial interest in the operation; and
- any other matter that the ministry believes is relevant to the legal, financial or operational independence of the operation.
- For more information about related entities please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Agriculture Knowledge Centre at 1-866-457-2377.
Before You Apply
By participating in this program, applicants understand they must meet all eligibility requirements which includes compliance with The Irrigation Act, 2019.
- Irrigation districts must be in good standing as a district and have met the criteria as laid out in Part 2 of The Irrigation Act, 2019.
- All current Irrigators are required to pay a per acre levy fee to the Irrigation Crop Diversification Corporation to support irrigation research and development in the province as per Part 5 of The Irrigation Act, 2019.
Projects must meet the following requirements and applicants must obtain the following inspections and/or documents prior to submitting a rebate application:
- Irrigate a minimum of 10 acres.
- Have a valid Water Rights Licence issued by the Water Security Agency (WSA) or a Water Service Agreement with a recognized Irrigation District.
- Modifications to pump sites may require approvals from the Federal Government (e.g., Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada) and/or the Ministry of Environment and/or the WSA. All required approvals must be issued prior to submitting a program application.
- Vegetable, greenhouse and fruit operation applications may be considered on a case-by-case basis exempting the requirement for minimum acreage. Please contact Programs Branch to discuss potential eligibility for this type of project.
Agri-Environmental Risk Assessment
As a condition to access program funding, applicants are required to review the Agri-Environmental Risk Assessment before beginning their project.
- Purchase and installation of a new low pressure center pivot, low-pressure linear system, or sub-surface irrigation for existing licensed irrigated acres when converting from gravity, or side-wheel irrigation systems.
- Materials and installation for low pressure, high efficiency sprinklers, including:
- Low pressure sprinkler nozzles;
- Pressure regulators;
- Pipe/hose extension/carts to provide low clearance;
- Booms for low pressure application;
- Delivery hose/pipe; and
- Filters and emitters for trickle or drip systems.
- Conversion from combustion engine to electric powered pumps (including installation of power).
- Conversion from electric or combustion engine to wind or solar powered pumps.
- End gun booster pumps and low-pressure main pump replacement (when it has been demonstrated to the ministry's satisfaction existing high-pressure pumps cannot be converted to low pressure).
- Purchase, modification and installation of fertigation equipment (eligible on new or existing irrigation systems) such as:
- Injector pumps;
- Associated installation materials; and
- Liquid fertilizer storage tanks dedicated to the fertigation system.
- Improving irrigation pump intake systems with new screens or shoreline modifications to protect the water source, including backflow prevention/check valves, repair of existing pump intake system and erosion control measures including the cost of earthwork for shoreline modification.
- Installing flow monitors, water metres or equipment that will measure water usage.
- Conversion of single speed electric irrigation pump motors to variable frequency drive motors, including related control systems.
- Speed control system to vary the speed of the lateral allowing different water depths to be applied.
- Soil and plant moisture monitoring equipment (e.g., soil and leaf moisture sensors).
- Remote communications technologies such as telemetry that communicates with the centre pivot panel.
- Purchase and installation of new Variable Rate irrigation equipment on new or existing irrigation systems.
- Sprinkler control valves, complete with electrical and related components to control the individual sprinklers or groups of sprinklers.
- Electronic control panel including wiring and equipment to signal the control valves along the lateral length to apply the desired amount of water.
- Lateral positioning system to locate the exact position of the lateral in the field so that the water can be applied in the appropriate places.
Ineligible Activities or Expenses
Ineligible expenses and activities include:
- Projects (and any expenditures) commencing prior to October 1, 2022.
- Invoices not issued in the applicant's name.
- Purchase and installation of irrigation systems for new irrigation development.
- Drip irrigation systems for orchards and u-pick operations, unless converting from a sprinkler or flood system.
- Costs associated with new irrigation development, including but not limited to:
- Pipe infrastructure (e.g., center pivot, wheel move structures, traveling reels, mainline pipe); and
- Water-source expansion costs.
- Electric motors to replace existing electric motors to drive pumps.
- Combustion engines to replace existing combustion engines to drive pumps.
- Items considered regular repair or maintenance.
- Modification of irrigation works not owned by the applicant (e.g., irrigation district works, city effluent works).
- Taxes, financing fees, interest charges or legal fees.
- Applicant/employee labour and administration costs.
- Fees paid to third parties for application support.
- Purchase of land/property or payment of easements.
- Basic repair and maintenance or ongoing expenses.
- Extended warranty or insurance costs.
- Used, leased or fabricated materials and infrastructure, including equipment purchased at auction. To be eligible, new items and infrastructure must be purchased from a recognized dealer. For the purposes of the program, a recognized dealer is typically defined as a business where manufacturing is a key service or the business is an authorized dealer for a certain item(s).
- In‐kind freight/mileage.
- In-kind equipment use.
- In‐kind materials such as rocks, sand, gravel or clay.
- In-kind payment (e.g., trading) for third party services/supplies.
- Materials from inventory.
- Any submissions for rebate using a third-party contractor must be from a contractor who is third-party arm's length, or the submission will be considered using in kind labour and original invoices for all materials will be required.
- Costs claimed for expenses/activities which may receive funding under other Sustainable CAP programs, or any other government grant, rebate or assistance program.
Review the Irrigation Efficiency Program details, including eligibility.
Applicants are encouraged to submit rebate claims as soon as the project is fully constructed and operational for irrigation. All invoices must be paid in full before applying for the rebate. No interim payments will be made. Please submit copies of invoices as originals will not be returned.
Agri-Environmental Risk AssessmentAs a condition to access program funding, applicants are required to review the Agri-Environmental Risk Assessment before beginning their project.
Projects must be completed and applications for rebate submitted by March 31, 2028.
Note: It is recommended this application form is saved to your computer before entering your information.
Completed application packages can be submitted by email to email@example.com or mail to:
Ministry of Agriculture, Programs Branch
329 – 3085 Albert Street
Regina SK S4S 0B1