Drain Tile in the West
Consider that conservation can simply mean that land is left undisturbed as habitat, which meets some environmental goals — but, people need to eat. Once the decision is made to farm a tract of land, farming it with efficiency results in fewer acres required for crop production and more acres available for other uses, including habitat.
The technology available today allows drainage and irrigation to be accomplished with less environmental impact and greater improvements in productivity than was possible 50 to 100 years ago. Well-designed tile systems that follow field contours and provide uniform drainage and irrigation will be a linchpin of future conservation efforts. This allows more options for farmers to move to reduced tillage systems, improve nutrient uptake, conserve water, and also allows for innovative storage solutions.