Farmers in southwest Georgia’s Flint River Valley could one day get accurate, hyperlocal weather forecasts just for their individual farms up to three days in advance.A team of researchers from the Flint River Soil and Water Conservation District, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the University of Georgia and IBM is using sophisticated big data tools to analyze large volumes of meteorological, geographical, historical and other data. The goal is to model weather behavior with a higher degree of accuracy and localization than can be done today.Such forecasting would help farmers make more informed irrigation, seeding, harvesting and fertilizer scheduling decisions, which in turn would enable them to conserve water and increase long-term crop yield.”With data and data-driven solutions, we are looking at the next generation of agriculture,” says David Reckford, director of The Flint River Partnership project. “We are beginning to apply a level of science to the system that will allow us to grow more with less.”The Flint River Valley is an important part of Georgia’s agricultural industry. Farms in the 27-county region contribute roughly $2 billion annually in farm-based revenue.About 10 years ago, the region’s water conservation authority teamed up with the U.S Department of Agriculture, University of… Read full this story
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