Where in the world is this found?
The Ogallala Aquifer is spread throughout multiple states in the Great Plains of the United States: Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming.
What is the importance of this water resource?
The Ogallala Aquifer is the single most important source of water in the High Plains region, providing nearly all the water for residential, industrial, and agricultural use.
What is the impact of the Ogallala aquifer on the environment and human health?
The Ogallala aquifer positively effects the environment because the environments depend on this water resource. However, with the depletion of the water, the environment is being negatively effected with drought and limitation of use.
How has the water resource changed over time?
The Ogallala aquifer has become depleted and polluted. In the 1990's contamination of the groundwater became an issue; pesticides and nitrates were found in the water. Irrigation began to impact the aquifer in the 1940's by overdrawing the water and that resulted in depletion because the water is slow to recharge. After the large-scale irrigation the water levels had dropped by over 100 feet in some areas. In the 1980's and 1990's the groundwater mining decreased but still saw an average rate of 2.7 feet depletion each year. However, now there is more efficient ways to irrigate and that has helped lower the rate of water depletion.