Across the United States, the practices for collecting water use data vary significantly from state to state and vary also from one water use category to another, in response to the laws regulating water use and interest in water use data as an input for water management. However, many rich bodies of water use data exist at the state level, and an outstanding opportunity exists for assembling and statistically analyzing these data at the national level. This would lead to better techniques for water use estimation and to a greater capacity to link water use with its impact on water resources.
This report is a product of the Committee on Water Resources Research, which provides consensus advice to the Water Resources Division (WRD) of the USGS on scientific, research, and programmatic issues. The committee works under the auspices of the Water Science and Technology Board of the National Research Council (NRC). The committee considers a variety of topics that are important scientifically and programmatically to the USGS and the nation and issues reports when appropriate. This report concerns the National Water-Use Information Program (NWUIP).