Avoiding Water-Intensive Energy Production: How to Keep the Water Running and the Lights On
The confluence of growing water demand and global warming impacts are stressing U.S. water supplies. Water shortages pose a major threat to the reliability and affordability of U.S. electricity because 96% of the nation’s power comes from thermoelectric and hydropower facilities that require sufficient water to function. State legislatures, energy-planning agencies, and water boards should work in concert to encourage deployment of technologies that will reduce the amount of water needed to produce electricity. Deployment of water-efficient energy facilities is suitable under both riparian and prior appropriation water systems.