Whether for drinking, irrigation, industry or as part of a healthy ecosystem, groundwater is a vital natural resource affecting all walks of life. The Wyoming Association of Conservation Districts (WACD) and Wyoming Natural Resource Foundation (WNRF) ask Wyomingites to join in recognizing National Groundwater Awareness Week, March 9-15.

Groundwater is a renewable natural resource that comes from precipitation that soaks into the soil and moves downward to fill openings in beds of rock and sand. These geologic formations that contain groundwater are called aquifers.In many areas of Wyoming, surface water is fully appropriated and residents are relying more and more on groundwater.

Lisa Lindemann, Ground Water Administrator, Wyo. State Engineer’s Office, said.

“Groundwater appropriations have steadily increased over the years. Increased development places a greater demand on the state’s groundwater resources and requires a more comprehensive view when acting as stewards of Wyoming’s water,”

More than 75 percent of Wyoming citizens depend on groundwater for part or all of their drinking water supply. Nationwide, groundwater supplies nearly half of all drinking water and 40 percent of irrigation water. Groundwater sustains stream flows and helps maintain ecosystems that are dependent on groundwater discharge to streams, lakes and wetlands, according to the National Ground Water Association (NGWA).

To help conserve this precious resource, be conservative with water use, never let a faucet run when not using water, only run the dishwasher and clothes washer when there is a full load, repair dripping faucets and toilets, choose water- and energy-efficient appliances, landscape with native plants and avoid over-watering lawns.

 

To learn more about groundwater and how to keep your drinking water supply safe, visit www.conservewy.com, www.ngwa.org and www.knowyourwell.org.