On Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program

$100 million is available to install new or upgrade existing irrigation infrastructure or technology.

Action on the Ground



The On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program is a competitive grants program funding projects that generate water savings by improving the efficiency and productivity of on-farm irrigation water use and management.


Eligible Applicants

The On Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program will provide funding to delivery partners who are responsible for managing and implementing proponents’ sub-projects.

An eligible delivery partner applicant under the program must:

  • be an entity with direct and demonstrable links to irrigators such as, but not limited to:
  • an Irrigation Infrastructure Operator
  • a Catchment Management Authority
  • a commodity or agricultural industry group
  • a regional irrigation body

Delivery partners will have a critical role in designing and managing an overall delivery partner project that brings together a number of proponent sub-projects designed to improve on-farm irrigation efficiency and transfer a share of the water savings generated through these proponent sub-projects to the Australian Government.



The Australian Government has allocated up to $100 million for Round Four of the Program. Subject to funding allocated to this Round of the program, there is no maximum or minimum funding limit for overall delivery partner projects, sub-project types or individual proponent sub-projects.


Eligible Activities

Activities eligible for project/sub-project funding generating water savings for the Australian Government will be infrastructure based, occur on an existing irrigated farm, and may include the following:

  • installing new or upgrading existing irrigation infrastructure or technology, including automated water management systems and sensing equipment intended to improve decision-making about irrigation which will improve irrigation efficiency
  • improving irrigated area layout or design for the purpose of improving on-farm irrigation efficiency (e.g. laser grading, decommissioning old irrigation infrastructure as part of enhancing the overall efficiency of the system)
  • ancillary equipment necessary for new or upgraded irrigation systems to function (e.g. computer equipment)
  • training, where this is important to the success of the project.  However, training on how to use new irrigation infrastructure equipment should normally be provided by the supplier as part of the installation costs
  • pre-construction activities including: building/environmental approvals, cultural heritage approvals, engineering design and environmental impact statements (provided these do not commence/conclude prior to Stage One (in-principle) approval).

Program funding will be directed to irrigation applied to primary production. This includes irrigated crops, pasture for stock (e.g. dairy) and commercial horticulture.



This program has now closed



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