|Steam-Pumped Land Drainage|
|Prerequisite||Advanced Irrigation, Basic Steam Pump|
|Research Points Needed|
The use of steam pumps to drain marshy and low-lying land for agriculture.
There is always a growing demand for food and a finite amount of land where it can be grown. With new steam-powered pumping machines and cunningly laid out ditches, it becomes possible to drain land previously considered impossible to use. Water runs downhill, but where there is no “downhill”, it must be lifted and carried away by man’s artifice. A steam pump can raise water at a rate no animal- or man-powered contraption can possible match.
In Europe, the Dutch were (naturally enough, given their geography) the experts on drainage, using windmills to move water into higher channels where it could flow away. These, however, relied entirely on the wind. The steam-powered beam engine, used to drain mine workings, had no such weakness, and continued to pump as long as it had water and fuel. In Britain, the beam engine not only allowed the drainage of land, but also eased the problems of canal construction and routing.