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387. U.S. Water Withdrawals and Consumptive Use Per Day, by End Use

[Includes Puerto Rico. Withdrawal signifies water physically withdrawn from a source. Includes fresh and saline water; excludes water used for hydroelectric power. For definitions, see below table]

Industrial Steam
Total Per Irrigation Per Rural and electric
Year (bil. gal.) capita 1 (bil. gal.) Total capita 3 (bil. gal.) misc. 5 utilities
(gal.) (bil. gal.) (gal.) (bil. gal.) (bil. gal.)
1940 140 1,027 71 10 75 3.1 29 23
1950 180 1,185 89 14 145 3.6 37 40
1955 240 1,454 110 17 148 3.6 39 72
1960 270 1,500 110 21 151 3.6 38 100
1965 310 1,602 120 24 155 4.0 46 130
1970 370 1,815 130 27 166 4.5 47 170
1975 420 1,972 140 29 168 4.9 45 200
1980 440 1,953 150 34 183 5.6 45 210
1985 399 1,650 137 38 189 7.8 31 187
1990 408 1,620 137 41 195 7.9 30 195
1995 402 1,500 134 43 192 8.9 26 190
1960 61 339 52 3.5 25 2.8 3.0 0.2
1965 77 403 66 5.2 34 3.2 3.4 0.4
1970 87 427 73 5.9 36 3.4 4.1 0.8
1975 96 451 80 6.7 38 3.4 4.2 1.9
1980 100 440 83 7.1 38 3.9 5.0 3.2
1985 92 380 74 (6) (6) 9.2 6.1 6.2
1990 94 370 76 (6) (6) 8.9 6.7 4.0
1995 100 374 81 (6) (6) 9.9 4.8 3.7
1 Based on U.S. Census Bureau resident population as of July 1.
2 Includes commercial water withdrawals.
3 Based on population served.
4 Rural farm and nonfarm household and garden use, and water for farm
stock and dairies.
5 For l940-l960, includes manufacturing and mineral industries, rural
commercial industries, air-conditioning, resorts, hotels, motels,
military and other State and Federal agencies, and micscellaneous;
thereafter, includes manufacturing, mining, and mineral processing,
ordnance, construction, and miscellaneous.
6 Public supply consumptive use included in end-use categories.
Source: 1940-1960, U.S. Bureau of Domestic Business Development,
based principally on committee prints, Water Resources Activities in the
United States, for the Senate Committee on National Water Resources, U.S. Senate,
thereafter, U.S. Geological Survey, Estimated Use of Water in the United
States in l995, circular l200, and previous quinquennial issues.
* * * * * * * * * *
Estimated Use of Water in the United States
Glossary of water-use terminology
Water-use terminology is continuing to expand in this series of water-use circulars prepared at 5-year intervals. The
term "water use" as initially used in 1950 in the U.S. Geological Survey's water-use circulars meant withdrawals of
water; in the report for 1960, the term was redefined to include consumptive use of water as well as withdrawals.
With the beginning of the Survey's National Water-Use Information Program in 1978 the term was again redefined
to include return flow and offstream and instream uses. In the report for 1985, the term was redefined to include
withdrawals plus deliveries.
institutions. The water may be obtained from a public supply or may be self supplied. See also public supply and
self- supplied water.
crops, consumed by humans or livestock, or otherwise removed from the immediate water environment. Also
referred to as water consumed.
Generally, the water is not available for further use; however, leakage from an irrigation ditch, for example, may
percolate to a ground-water source and be available for further use.
and dishes, flushing toilets, and watering lawns and gardens. Also called residential water use. The water may be
obtained from a public supply or may be self supplied. See also public supply and self-supplied water.
from the soil and surface-water bodies and as a result of plant transpiration. See also evaporation and transpiration.
than 500 mg/L of dissolved solids is undesirable for drinking and many industrial uses.
subsurface water in the saturated zone (a zone in which all voids are filled with water) where the water is under
pressure greater than atmospheric.
generators are driven by falling water. Hydroelectric water use is classified as an instream use in this report.
and includes such industries as steel, chemical and allied products, paper and allied products, mining, and petroleum
refining. The water may be obtained from a public supply or may be self supplied. See also public supply and self-
supplied water.
maintain vegetative growth in recreational lands such as parks and golf courses.
needs. Livestock as used here includes cattle, sheep, goats, hogs, and poultry. Also included are animal specialties.
See also rural water use and animal specialties water use.
ores; liquids, such as crude petroleum; and gases, such as natural gas. Also includes uses associated with quarrying,
well operations (dewatering), milling (crushing, screening, washing, floatation, and so forth), and other preparations
customarily done at the mine site or as part of a mining activity. Does not include water used in processing, such as
smelting, refining petroleum, or slurry pipeline operations. These uses are included in industrial water use.
industry, irrigation, livestock, thermoelectric power generation, and other uses. Sometimes called off-channel use or
provide water for a variety of uses, such as domestic, commercial, thermoelectric power, industrial, and public
water use. See also commercial water use, domestic water use, thermoelectric power water use, industrial water
use, and public water use.
washing, and municipal parks and swimming pools. See also public supply.
reaches a natural waterway or aquifer.
domestic and livestock needs. The water generally is self supplied, and includes domestic use, drinking water for
livestock, and other uses, such as dairy sanitation, evaporation from stock-watering ponds, and cleaning and waste
disposal. See also domestic water use, livestock water use, and self-supplied water.
obtained from a public supply.
water may be obtained from a public supply or may be self supplied. See also public supply and self-supplied
the atmosphere from the plant surface. See also evaporation and evapotranspiration.
undesirable constituents.
for domestic use, irrigation, or industrial processing. In this report, the quantity of water use for a specific category
is the combination of self-supplied withdrawals and public-supply deliveries. 2) More broadly, water use pertains to
human's interaction with and influence on the hydrologic cycle, and includes elements such as water withdrawal,
delivery, consumptive use, wastewater release, reclaimed wastewater, return flow, and instream use. See also
offstream use and instream use.

use and self-supplied water.


These tables are based on figures supplied by the United States Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Commerce and are subject to revision by the Census Bureau.

Copyright © 2006 Photius Coutsoukis and Information Technology Associates, all rights reserved.