Committee identifies priorities for nation’s future water resource challenges

Everything from aging water-related infrastructure and extreme weather to growing populations and climate change impacts the quantity and quality of water resources available throughout the United States.
To better understand which challenges will be most important to address over the next 25 years, a National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) committee has released a report identifying the nation’s prevalent water resource needs, which provided advice to the U.S. Geological Survey Water Mission Area (USGS WMA), which commissioned the report.
, Galla Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Notre Dame and director of the Notre Dame Environmental Change Initiative, served as one of 15 experts on the NASEM’s Committee on Future Water Resource Needs for the Nation.
In the report, the committee outlined six critical challenges of both national and global water concerns as well as its recommendations.
The report highlighted the importance of developing a water accounting system, which should encompass not only the availability of water resources, but also how the Earth’s biophysical processes impact that availability.
“We really focused on how we prepare for the coming years, as the country faces increasing water-related concerns.
We highlighted that humans are an important piece of the puzzle, both in how we influence water resources as well as our decision-making about our role in the future, making it even more critical that society is involved and informed about future water challenges,” said Tank.
Specific technological innovations — such as sensors, big-data computational models and cloud computing — have the potential to change the way research and monitoring of water resources is conducted.
To read the full report, visit:
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