Public water-supply systems in Tennessee provide water to for domestic, industrial, and commercial uses, and municipal services. In 2005, more than 569 public water-supply systems distributed about 920 million gallons per day (Mgal/d) of non-purchased surface water and groundwater to a population of nearly 6 million in Tennessee. Surface-water sources provided 64 percent (about 591 Mgal/d) of the State's water supplies. Groundwater produced from wells and springs in Middle and East Tennessee and from wells in West Tennessee provided 36 percent (about 329 Mgal/d) of the public water supplies. Gross per capita water use for Tennessee in 2005 was about 171 gallons per day. Water withdrawals by public water-supply systems in Tennessee have increased from 250 Mgal/d in 1955 to 920 Mgal/d in 2005. Tennessee public water-supply systems withdraw less groundwater than surface water, and surface-water use has increased at a faster rate than groundwater use. However, 34 systems reported increased groundwater withdrawals during 2000–2005, and 15 of these 34 systems reported increases of 1 Mgal/d or more. The county with the largest surface-water withdrawal rate (130 Mgal/d) was Davidson County. Each of Tennessee's 95 counties was served by at least one public water-supply system in 2005. The largest groundwater withdrawal rate (about 167 Mgal/d) by a single public water-supply system was reported by Memphis Light, Gas and Water, which served 654,267 people in Shelby County in 2005.
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USGS Numbered Series
Public water-supply systems and associated water use in Tennessee, 2005