March 7, 2016
This is National Groundwater Awareness Week and it’s a time to take stock of this most important natural resource according to National Groundwater Association (NGWA) Director of General Public Outreach, Cliff Treyens. The NGWA says that life as we know it would not be possible without groundwater.
What was said more than 200 years ago remains true today: When the well runs dry, we shall know the value of water. Check out this video about groundwater from the NGWA.
Here are some more interesting groundwater awareness week facts:
- The United States alone uses 76 billion gallons per day of groundwater. This equals 1 billion, 586 million bathtubs full of water, enough to circle the Earth more than 60 times
- India is the largest groundwater user in the world, using 66.3 trillion gallons in one year enough water to fill an 18-inch-diameter pipeline to the Moon and back 2,000 times
- Groundwater is under most of the Earth’s surface
- Under Africa’s Sahara Desert, there’s 20 times more groundwater than all the surface water in the entire continents lakes
- Groundwater is the world’s most extracted raw material
- About 60 percent of groundwater withdrawn worldwide is used for agriculture; the rest is almost equally divided between the domestic and industrial sectors
- Globally groundwater provides 25 to 40 percent of the world’s drinking water
- About 38 percent of irrigated lands around the world are irrigated with groundwater
Because groundwater is out of sight and out of mind for most people, National Groundwater Awareness Week provides an opportunity for people to learn about the importance of groundwater to their lives, said Treyens. He urges the public to visit NGWA’s groundwater fundamentals web page, as well as its website, WellOwner.org, where well owners can learn information vital to take care of their water quality and their wells.
Video courtesy of NGWA.