When Irrigation Season Ends

Once the irrigation season ends, typically around mid-October, District crews begin the maintenance of the canal system for the upcoming irrigation season. This work includes cleaning and repairing the canals, roadways, and equipment; installing new head gates and headwalls; along with installation of canal lining and conversion from an open canal to enclosed piping.

Canal lining and piping are major elements of the District’s Enhanced Water Conservation Program which began in 2015 and helps the District meet its goal of providing clean, reliable irrigation water to its customers, while improving environmental concerns in the area.

Enhanced Water Conservation Program

In 2015, SMID began its Enhanced Water Conservation Program (EWCP) by completing a Feasibility Study to evaluate water conservation measures and infrastructure upgrades. This work includes piping SMID canals and the Yakima Ridge tunnel; canal lining; and constructing automated flow control facilities with instrumentation and telemetry. The infrastructure upgrades and conservation efforts will improve water delivery efficiency and increase reliability for SMID customers. At the same time, the planned improvements will benefit the environment through decreased water diversions, improvements in water quality and temperature, and improved instream flows in the Yakima River. To fund these upgrades, SMID plans to leverage a portion of its conserved water savings to generate the needed revenue, pursue grants from public funding sources, and seek other funding opportunities.

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  • Establishing a single river diversion point for all three SMID canals. The District received approval from the Department of Ecology to utilize the Pomona Diversion for all three canals with certain limitations. SMID is currently evaluating utilizing the Fowler Ditch as another point of diversion for the Hubbard Canal. The District is also planning to utilize the Roza Wasteway pump station as a back-up source for the Selah-Moxee Canal in case of an emergency.

  • Piping the lower Selah-Moxee Canal. Phase I of SMID’s EWCP calls for piping 21,492 linear feet (4.07 miles) of earthen ditch of the lower Selah-Moxee Canal. This area serves 1,458 acres of land. Beginning in 2019, SMID has installed over 4,000 feet of pipe in the lower portions of the Selah-Moxee Canal. The next segment will include piping over 4,300 linear feet with 30-inch PVC pipe.

  • Piping the Lower Moxee Canal. Phase II of the EWCP calls for piping 8,707 linear feet (1.65 miles) of the lower portions of the Moxee Canal. A portion of the Moxee Canal is already piped, and this project is an expansion of that project. In 2020, SMID installed approximately 2,500 linear feet of 30-inch PVC pipe to begin this project. The next segment of Phase II will include installing 6,000 linear feet of pipe near Mieras and Morrier Roads.
  • Pipe and Line the upper portions of the Selah-Moxee Canal. SMID will line the upper 4.7 miles of the Selah-Moxee Canal. To improve reliability, this project will be paired with piping a portion of the canal that travels under the Yakima Ridge via a tunnel. Currently, debris that falls inside the tunnel can damage SMID infrastructure and cause service interruptions. In the fall of 2021, SMID will begin installing liner material in the upper portions of the Selah-Moxee Canal in East Selah.

Completed Projects

Location Description Completed
Moxee Ditch Postma Canal Piping: Postma Pipe Line Phase III (Railroad to Canal End) 21″-12″ PVC 2014
S-M Canal end Gam-Upper Canal Piping: 1300 LF of 18″ & 24″ PVC 2019
S-M Canal End Upper Canal Piping: 1500 LF 24″ PVC 2020
L-M Canal Ekelman Canal Piping: 2450 LF 30″ PVC 2020
S-M Canal End Lower Canal Piping: 1300 LF 18″ PVC 2021
S-M Canal at Sheep Ranch Canal Lining: 700 LF canal liner 2022
S-M Canal at Pamona Canal Lining: 1700 LF canal liner 2022
S-M Canal Rob-Gamache Canal Piping: 860 LF 30” PVC 2022
Moxee Ditch Mieras Phase A Canal Piping: 1200 LF 30″ PVC 2022
Hubbard Intertie Canal Piping: 200 LF piping and water measurement 2022

Future Projects

Location Description Proposed Completion
S-M Canal Siphon 2-3 Canal Piping: 1300 LF 60″ PVC Pipe 2023
Moxee Ditch Mieras Phase B Canal Piping: 800 LF 30″ PVC Pipe 2023
East Selah Canal Lining: 1,000 LF Canal Lining 2023
S-M Tunnel Entrance Piping Currently in Design. Canal Piping: 1300 LF 60″ PVC Pipe 2024
S-M Rob-Gam Piping Ph C Canal Piping: 3500 LF 30″ PVC Pipe 2024
Moxee Ditch Morrier Piping Canal Piping: 4300 LF 30″ PVC Pipe 2025
S-M Diversion Update SCADA Systemr 2026
S-M Canal Design: Canal pipeline designs 2024-6


East Moxee Black Rock Groundwater Marketing Phase II Study

Recently, the Bureau of Reclamation provided SMID with another grant to continue to explore options for expanding service to users east of SMID that currently depend on a declining groundwater system for their water supply. Helping our neighbors (some of whom are also SMID customers), supporting agriculture, and being a good water steward are key parts of SMID’s mission. Additionally, these users can also create a revenue stream to offset Enhanced Conservation Program projects, which benefits existing SMID customers.

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What does the Study entail? Starting in the fall 0f 2021 SMID began the following aspects of the study:

  • Conduct in-depth Landowner outreach, primarily with smaller domestic water users in the East Moxee area that are at risk of loss of their groundwater supply, to improve participation in a future water market.
  • Evaluate how water from the Yakima River can supply these users through SMID canals.
  • Perform an Economic Analysis to evaluate the value of the basin and economic impacts from loss of groundwater.
  • Develop a Water Banking Interlocal agreement.
  • Develop a groundwater model to determine safe sustaining yield of the aquifer.
  • Initiate an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).
  • Conduct an easement and access study for future infrastructure.
  • Advance engineering design for future irrigation infrastructure

We welcome your input on these initiatives that will help ensure a high quality of service in the future. Please contact the District Office with any questions.

Project Photos

Selah-Moxee, Pamona Canal Lining – Project Completed Fall 2022

Selah-Moxee Canal End Piping – Project Completed Fall 2020

Unloading Pipe – 2020

Duffield Canal Lining – Project Completed Fall 2020