Irrigators’ Perception and Intention towards Water Re-allocation Policies in Southern Alberta

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Hall, Mathew Peter
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Lethbridge Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of Geography.
A necessary precursor to irrigated agriculture in southern Alberta is the availability of massive quantities of water. Many suggest that water demand will rise substantially in the decades to come. These projections also come at a time of increasing environmental awareness in Alberta, leading some to advocate that more water should be secured for environmental purposes. The Alberta government enabled inter-sectoral water transfers as a way to re-allocate water in order to satisfy growing demand. This has raised skepticism among the irrigation community over the use of water transfers as a way to satisfy future demand. The research presented in this thesis approaches this issue by examining the factors that influence irrigators’ perceptions towards using water transfers as a way to re-allocate water to other uses. The findings reveal that if the government is relying on water transfers as the primary way to re-allocate water in the future, it must address irrigators’ skepticism, and create conditions that promote transfers as a preferable option.
water management , water trading , irrigation , water re-allocation , water conservation , water resources management