BROOKINGS — Promoting management practices that improve South Dakota’s water quality and are economically sustainable is a focus for John McMaine who was recently hired to serve as a South Dakota State University assistant professor and SDSU Extension water management engineer.
“Growing up on a farm in rural Kentucky, I understand the realities of the modern American farmer and am cognizant of what it takes to succeed,” McMaine said. “When it comes to water quality, the solutions I present need to be not only environmentally sustainable but economically sustainable.”
In his role with SDSU Extension, McMaine will develop educational and research programming and activities which address minimizing environmental impacts of agricultural production systems. To accomplish this, McMaine will work closely with SDSU faculty and researchers, SDSU Extension staff, municipalities, producers and numerous other stakeholders throughout South Dakota.
McMaine will also spend time developing research to address water quality challenges faced by South Dakota’s citizens and municipalities.
“John brings with him extensive knowledge he has gained from research and education as well as on-farm water management experience,” said Alvaro Garcia, SDSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Program director and professor.
More about John McMaine
As a youth, John McMaine developed an interest in water management. His family raises vegetables on a farmland bordering a small river. His dad also works off the farm as a civil engineer designing water treatment facilities.
“It seemed like every vacation we took growing up involved a tour of a water treatment plant,” said McMaine, who has a PhD in biosystems agricultural engineering from Oklahoma State University – Stillwater.
He said that because he had hands-on experience with irrigation and the several natural streams that run through his family’s farm, he was able to make applicable connections from what he learned in textbooks and the classroom to his family’s operation.
Most of his graduate and doctoral research focused on developing and evaluating tools that address water quality and water quantity issues in agricultural and urban settings.
“I’m looking forward to working with agriculture producers to help them develop management practices that will help them prevent erosion, improve stream bank stability and improve overall water quality,” McMaine said.
He added that he also looks forward to teaming up with South Dakota’s communities to improve urban water quality. To contact McMaine, e-mail him at [email protected]