WHY COLLECT WATER-USE INFORMATION?
Water used in Georgia increased from 5,560 to 6,765 million gallons per day (22 percent) between 1970 and 1980. In 1970 the population of Georgia was about 4,600,000. By 1980 it had rcached an estimated 5,500,000, a 20-percent increase. The amount of irrigated land in the State incrcased from 79,600 acres to nearly one million acres during the decade, which resulted in a 12-fold increase in irrigation water use. The value of goods produced by Georgia's industries increased from $21,000,000 in 1970 to $32,000,000 in 1980 (figures adjusted for inflation). These were the major factors contributing to the significant increase in water use.
For years, ground water and surface water in Georgia were thought of as unlimited natural resources. However, with the impact of recent droughts and the increasing demand for water it has become apparent that proper management of Georgia's water resources is necessary to assure continuing supplies of good-quality water. To make decisions on wa ter resources, a manager needs comprehensive, up-to-date information on the quantity of water being used in the State, and the total resources available for use.