Much of the western United States is running out of water with much of Southern Idaho in the abnormally dry or moderate drought categories.
Nearly 80% of the American West is in a drought and now is the time to think about the future of Idaho water.
With much of the west in what is being called a “Megadrought” policy expert Steve Greenhut says now is the time to focus on the policy of water abundance. He said due to Idaho’s dramatic population boom it is important to focus on water systems that meet the needs of a growing population and water can be saved in wet years for future dry years.
He said that in Idaho 85% of water goes to agriculture so conserving water at home only scratches the surface of the issue.
“1.7% of Idaho’s water is used by commercial and residences, so even if you slashed that number dramatically you’re still not doing anything about the overall issue,” said Greenhut. “If we’re all focused on watering lawns that are not going to solve the problem. We need to build infrastructure projects that keep up with the population growth.”
He added that water recycling systems can also help with new technology allowing recycled water to become drinkable and not just used for industrial or irrigation.