Without Water Transfers, Cities will Thirst

by George R. Baumli, State Water Contractors, Sacramento, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Management of Irrigation and Drainage Systems: Integrated Perspectives


California will have to depend on water transfers from agricultural areas for at least the next ten years to supply water needed for increasing municipal and industrial (urban) uses. California's population is projected to increase to about 36 million people by the year 2000, an increase of about 6 million over the 1990 population. This translates to a projected increase in urban water demands of 1,480 million cubic meters (mcm) over 1990 demands even with implementation of stringent water conservation and water reuse measures. Development of additional conventional water supply projects has been at a standstill for 25 years and it is not possible for any new major project to be brought on-line within the next ten years. Water transfers will be necessary to help close the gap between demands and supplies. This paper presents information on current and projected urban demands, demand reduction measures, why water transfers are necessary, conditions for water transfers, and examples of water transfers.

Subject Headings: Water supply | Water conservation | Municipal water | Water supply systems | Water reclamation | Water demand | Urban areas | California | United States

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