The Chicago Region's Valuable Water Resources

by Clint J. Keifer, (M.ASCE), Pres. and Chf. Operating Officer; Keifer Engineering, Inc., Chicago, Ill.; also, Vice Pres., Engineering-Science, Inc., Arcadia, Calif.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Water Resources Planning and Management Division, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 2, Pg. 541-559

Document Type: Journal Paper

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Solution of the complex water supply problems of the Chicago metropolitan area are discussed in detail. Limitations in the use of Lake Michigan water imposed by the U.S. Supreme Court's decrees of 1930 and 1967; the over-pumping and depletion of the deep sandstone aquifers; the increasing demands caused by the extensive growth of the metropolitan area; and the other uses such as lockages, leakages, navigation makeup, stormwater runoff and dilution water needed for waterway quality all add to the complexity of the water supply of this metropolitan region. Computer analyses reveal that projected future water supply demands will conflict with other uses of the 3,200-cfs allowable Lake Michigan water source. However, extensive studies show that the potential water supply deficit can be mitigated: (1)With implementation of conservation measures required by the Illinois Division of Water Resources in its water allocation order; (2)with completion and startup of the extensive pollution control facilities of the Metropolitan Sanitary District of Greater Chicago; and (3)upon success of the petition to the U.S. Supreme Court to change the Lake Michigan diversion accounting procedures.

Subject Headings: Water resources | Water pollution | Water supply systems | Water conservation | Urban areas | Lakes | Water quality | North America | Illinois | United States | Chicago | Great Lakes | Lake Michigan

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