ET Water Systems announced today a new irrigation controller that can cut water consumption, and hence water bills, by up to 50 percent. According to the company, the system takes several factors into consideration when developing automatic irrigation schedules, including “plant type, soil type, sprinkler head type, sun exposure, and slope.” And don’t forget perhaps the most pivotal factor: weather.
ET Water certainly hasn’t forgotten and it uses data from WeatherBug — a company that’s shaping up to become a smart grid technology provider and influencer — to help maximize the water savings. Here’s a snippet from the press release:
ET Water’s platform integrates up-to-the-minute weather data from the WeatherBug network of 9,000 local weather stations across the country, along with evapotranspiration (ET) science to account for water that is lost from the soil through evaporation and through plant transpiration. By integrating these and other critical irrigation factors, ET Water’s intelligent irrigation controllers and replacement controllers for legacy irrigation systems have proven to reduce water consumption by 20-50 percent, while promoting plant health and virtually eliminating harmful fertilizer and chemical runoff.
The Novato, CA-based firm’s announcement comes as the water management tech scene heats up. Industry giants like IBM and Oracle see the space as a fresh and potentially lucrative market that can benefit from IT platforms. Given the critical importance of agriculture in the face of population growth, water scarcity and climate change, a healthy, IT-driven water management market in the years to come is virtually a given.