The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is assessing the availability and use of the Nation's water resources to gain a clearer understanding of the status of our water resources and the land-use, water-use, and climatic trends that affect them. The goal of the National assessment is to improve our ability to forecast water availability for future economic and environmental uses. Assessments will be completed for regional aquifer systems across the Nation to help characterize how much water we have now, how water availability is changing, and how much water we can expect to have in the future (Reilly and others, 2008).
Water availability is a function of many factors, including the quantity and quality of water, and the laws, regulations, economics, and environmental factors that control its use. The focus of the Columbia Plateau regional ground-water availability assessment is to improve fundamental knowledge of the ground-water balance of the region, including the flows, storage, and ground-water use by humans. An improved quantitative understanding of the region's water balance not only provides key information about water quantity, but also can serve as a fundamental basis for many analyses of water quality and ecosystem health.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Ground-Water Availability Assessment for the Columbia Plateau Regional Aquifer System, Washington, Oregon, and Idaho