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Peggy Carr works on Water 2070 project ,

Peggy Carr, UF Water Institute Affiliate Faculty member, along with her colleague Paul Zwick from the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning’s GeoPlan Center, have helped map projections of Florida’s water usage in 2070.

The Water 2070 project utilized population distribution scenarios for 2010, and two for 2070 that were generated as part of a companion project, Florida 2070. The 2010 distribution of population, agriculture and protected lands served as a baseline for comparison with the 2070 alternatives. The water demand projections utilized 2010 USGS per capita demand data as a starting point.

“Because of the increased demand for water that will be generated by an additional 15 million people projected for 2070, environmental consequences could be severe unless demand is substantially reduced through conservation measures and/or supply is increased through water reuse,” said Carr.

The 2070 growth projection, with no improvement in water conservation efforts and unchanged development patterns, showed development-related water demand will double by 2070. According to the study, more compact development and a 20% increase in water conservation efforts would reduce water demand by 27% in comparison to the standard growth model.

“It is important for all Floridians to view the study, but particularly those involved in local and regional land use decision-making,” said Carr. “Because development-related water demand is closely linked to land use change”.

Final recommendations show two solutions to this issue—increased water supply or reduced water demand. Ultimately, the research recommendations from the Water 2070 project show the most effective way to reduce water consumption is to decrease the amount of water used in landscape irrigation.

Water 2070 Project was sponsored by 1000 Friends of Florida, a growth management advocacy group and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. For more information visit: http://1000friendsofflorida.org/water2070/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/water2070technicalreportfinal-text-TOC.pdf. or http://1000friendsofflorida.org/water2070/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/water2070summaryreportfinal.pdf.