Climate variability, whether it results in drought, floods, heat waves, or freezes – affects no single segment of the U.S. economy more than the $297 billion agriculture industry. The International Center for Water Technology (ICWT) at California State University, Fresno will be partnering with the U.S. Department of Commerce to address these issues at a seminar Sept. 15 in Fresno.

“Water and Energy Conservation: U.S. Department of Commerce Services for Agribusiness” will be a one-day seminar designed to help agriculture-related businesses learn about strategies for sustainability and economic growth, coming to terms with climate variability, climate data, services and program availability, and enhancing global competitiveness, expanding market access, increasing exports.

The event will be held from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Downtown in Fresno.

The ICWT is joining with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and International Trade Administration (ITA), both agencies of the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC), to bring this event to Fresno. Agency and industry experts will be on hand to give updates on the latest programs and services for agribusiness.

Fresno, Tulare and Kern counties are the three highest ranking agricultural producing counties in the state and have a combined yearly production value of over $14 billion. The DOC estimates that at least one-third of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is climate sensitive – a potential economic impact of $4 trillion per year.

“Agriculture is the most important industry in the San Joaquin Valley and is profoundly affected by climate, water and energy,” said Dr. David Zoldoske, director of the ICWT. “These variables put enormous economic pressure on agribusiness each year and that’s one of the reasons we felt it was important to work with the DOC to bring this event to the valley so farmers, ranchers and business owners could learn more about DOC services available to them,” adds Zoldoske.

The $30 per person registration includes a luncheon. To register and for a detailed agenda visit

Housed at Fresno State, the International Center for Water Technology (ICWT) was established to provide extended education, laboratory and field research; to be a resource for policy development and to assist in research to develop and adopt innovative solutions and technologies that improve water-use efficiency. The program’s broad directive encompasses issues such as water supply and quality; flood protection; environmental enhancement and energy efficiency.