A California dairy is getting extra help in preventing water pollution in light of its unique topography.

According to the Modesto (Calif.) Bee, Antonio Alberto’s dairy in the northern San Joaquin Valley is unlike most dairies in the region. His dairy sits on a 70-foot high bluff near the Tuolumne River.

Ensuring that manure from his 1,500-head hilltop herd does not reach the river below is a challenge, but it’s a challenge a federal program is helping to conquer.

The Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) is providing Alberto $231,000 over the next two years to help improve manure- and water-handling.

"The primary part is water quality, and the second part is water conservation," said Jonathan Groveman, a public affairs specialist for the agency, during a tour of the farm last week.

Improvements include leveling a portion of the acreage for efficient irrigation of the dairy’s feed crops and re-circulating water. The NRCS helped build a new pipeline between a manure storage area and the river, reducing the risk of a blowout.  

Read, “Feds help fund Hickman dairy fixes to keep water clean.”