Water Use Management in the North Slope Arctic Coastal Plain (
by Barbara K. Byrne, ARCO Alaska Inc, Anchorage, AK, USA,
Abstract: On the North Slope, water is dependent on accessibility as well as availability. Lakes which to do not freeze to the bottom, may support fish populations. To protect this resource, lakes may not be pumped dry. Often even large rivers freeze completely in all but the deepest channels. Since recharge is often slow or non-existent during the winter months, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game requested in the winter of 1975/76 that the oil industry find alternative water sources. Industry has worked with state and local agencies to develop ways to manage the water resources on the North Slope. Permanent water appropriations, based on historical use, are now viable management options. Several reservoirs have been constructed to increase winter storage capacity. Seasonal planning is utilized to coordinate use requirements with water availability and accessibility.
Subject Headings: Slopes | Sea water | Coastal management | Coastal plains | Water use | Water supply | Winter | Water resources | Freezing | Lakes | Fish management | Industries | Arctic | North America | Alaska | United States
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