North Unit Irrigation District

Public Scoping Scoping Comments due November 21 for Infrastructure Modernization Project

October 2, 2019 - The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced a public scoping meeting and public scoping period to consider improvements to aging irrigation infrastructure in North Unit Irrigation District, located in Jefferson County south of Madras, Oregon. 

By converting open-ditch irrigation canals into underground, closed-pipe systems, the proposed North Unit Irrigation District Modernization Project can reduce conveyance and operational losses over the entire irrigation season and improve the District’s ability to efficiently provide water to its patrons.

A public scoping meeting was held:

October 21, 2019 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Jefferson County Library Rodriguez Annex Building

134 SE E Street

Madras, Oregon

Participants had an opportunity to learn more about the proposed irrigation improvements at the meeting and submit their comments, ideas and concerns. Several project documents are located below. 

Improvements under consideration may be partially funded through the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Act of 1954 (PL 83-566) and will address water conservation, enhancement of wildlife and aquatic species habitat, and public safety risks while supporting existing agricultural land use.

The project is sponsored by the Deschutes Basin Board of Control and the North Unit Irrigation District, with funding and technical support from the Energy Trust of Oregon, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Farmers Conservation Alliance. NRCS is the lead federal agency for the proposed project. Farmers Conservation Alliance is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization which, as a federal contractor, is assisting NRCS and the sponsors in the Watershed Plan - Environmental Assessment process. 

Public scoping comments will be accepted from October 2, 2019 through November 21, 2019 related to the proposed project. 

Scoping comments can be submitted via the following ways:

1) Email:

2) At this online form

3) Mail to:
ATTN: North Unit Watershed Plan
Farmers Conservation Alliance
102 State St
Hood River, OR 97031

The comments will be used to inform the development of a Draft Watershed Plan – Environmental Assessment (Draft Watershed Plan/EA). The Draft Watershed Plan/EA will identify alternatives to meet the project’s purpose and need, identify the resources potentially affected by the project, and evaluate the effects of the project on those resources. Once the Draft Watershed Plan has been completed it will be released for public review. At that time, a second public meeting and comment period will be advertised and held to solicit questions and comments on the Draft Watershed Plan/EA. 

Anyone who provides their email during the scoping period or signs up below will receive notifications related to the project including when the Draft Watershed Plan/EA is available for review. 

For more information about North Unit Irrigation District, please visit their website

For further information please contact: 

Farmers Conservation Alliance


Please note: Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, be advised that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold from public review your personal identifying information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. 

Further information on the public involvement process can be found at the Council of Environmental Quality's Citizens Guide to NEPA.