How Many People Can an Aquifer Support?
ES1406  Estimated Water Use

In 1884, when wells first began discharging water from the Arapahoe aquifer, the water was used primarily for irrigation. The population was small, livestock was not much of a factor, and large industries didn't exist.

As the population changed, however, so did water use patterns. Agricultural and industrial users still get much of their water from the aquifer, but more of the water for public use now comes from surface water, which is stored in reservoirs.

  !   Examine the graph of estimated groundwater use.
Estimated from USGS Data

7. Rank the four types of water use from the most water used to the least.

8. As population increases, new homes and businesses are being built around the margin of the Denver metropolitan area. Which of the current water use categories might increase in the future? Which might decrease?


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