Today, growers and nearby communities breathed a sigh of relief as the USDA Risk Management Agency announced that the water loss resulting from Goshen/Gering-Ft. Laramie Canal tunnel collapse was an insurable loss.
Work continues to excavate soil above the irrigation tunnel collapse just south of Fort Laramie. A series of trench boxes is being installed to facilitate safe conditions for continued digging. Prospects remain uncertain for restoring water this irrigation season.
Repairs to the Gering-Fort Laramie-Goshen irrigation canal and tunnel are progressing, although it’s still too early to determine when water flow will be restored, growers were told Monday at stakeholder meetings in Nebraska and Wyoming. A photo series helps tell the story of progress.
The economic impact of the July 17 tunnel collapse on the Gering-Fort Laramie Canal could climb as high as $89 million if the loss of irrigation water results in a total crop failure, according to a new report issued by University of Wyoming Extension and Nebraska Extension.
As repairs continue on the collapsed tunnel in the Goshen/Gering-Fort Laramie Canal, unanswered questions remain about whether crop insurance will cover crop losses. Until that's determined, farmers in the affected area need to manage their crop as if water will return to the canal.
The Gering-Ft Laramie Irrigation District will host a public meeting Monday, August 12, in Scottsbluff to update farmers and landowners on the repair of the July 17 tunnel collapse and canal breach. Photos take viewers to the site and inside the tunnel.