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Fact Sheet 2009–3098

Summary of Estimated Water Use in the United States in 2005

By Nancy L. Barber

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About 410,000 million gallons per day (Mgal/d) of water was withdrawn for use in the United States during 2005. About 80 percent of the total (328,000 Mgal/d) withdrawal was from surface water, and about 82 percent of the surface water withdrawn was freshwater. The remaining 20 percent (82,600 Mgal/d) was withdrawn from groundwater, of which about 96 percent was freshwater. If withdrawals for thermoelectric power in 2005 are excluded, withdrawals were 210,000 Mgal/d, of which 129,000 Mgal/d (62 percent) was supplied by surface water and 80,700 Mgal/d (38 percent) was supplied by groundwater.

Water withdrawals in four States — California, Texas, Idaho, and Florida — accounted for more than one-fourth of all fresh and saline water withdrawn in the United States in 2005. More than half (53 percent) of the total withdrawals of 45,700 Mgal/d in California were for irrigation, and 28 percent were for thermoelectric power. Most of the withdrawals in Texas (26,700 Mgal/d) were for thermoelectric power (43 percent) and irrigation (29 percent). Irrigation accounted for 85 percent of the 19,500 Mgal/d of water withdrawn in Idaho, and thermoelectric power accounted for 66 percent of the 18,300 Mgal/d withdrawn in Florida.

First posted October 27, 2009

For additional information contact:
Chief, Office of Groundwater
U.S. Geological Survey
411 National Center
12201 Sunrise Valley Drive
Reston, VA 20192

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Suggested citation:

Barber, N.L., 2009, Summary of estimated water use in the United States in 2005: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2009–3098, 2 p.

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