News Releases
Photo from our visit to the Farmers Conservation Alliance
October 1, 2010

October 1, 2010 (Portland, Ore.) – Yesterday a group of Lemelson Foundation staff and friends from our Recognition and Mentoring Program (RAMP) partners in India, Indonesia and Peru were able to take a field trip to see some of the work of the Farmers Conservation Alliance (FCA), a local grantee providing an innovative irrigation screen that allows farmers to divert water for irrigation while also protecting fish and keeping out debris.

One of the larger Farmers Screens, this installation on a diversion in Hood River, Oregon allows irrigation water to pass over the screen, returning fish and debris back to the river. The FCA also makes smaller, modular screens – around 15 feet long – utilizing the same technology for individual farmer's properties.

The design for this new type of screen – which was recently featured on Portland's local public broadcast station – also allows for reduced operation and maintenance costs compared to similar products.

The RAMP partners were in town as part of a series of meetings The Foundation held this last week with grantees doing work supporting inventors both in the U.S. and in developing countries.

About the FCA

FCA officially opened its doors in January 2006 with a vision of supporting a community fabric comprised of a healthy environment and profitable agricultural industry. Charged with the responsibility of taking the Farmers Screen to market and investing any profits into the common good, FCA continues in its mission to develop resource solutions for rural communities. For more information, visit:

About the RAMPs

The Lemelson Foundation has established Recognition and Mentoring Programs (RAMPs) with local organizations and institutions in India, Indonesia and Peru to help local inventors and entrepreneurs establish viable, replicable and scalable enterprises. Since 2004, when the first RAMP was launched in India, nearly 5,000 student and grassroots inventors have participated in RAMP activities, and nearly 70 new technologies have been funded.