Tuesday, December 11, 2012

California Net Importer of Water, Pacific Institute Says

Net importer of natural gas, electricity and now water?  I'm not sure if this has any significance.  Time will tell.

The estimate is the first statewide analysis of its kind and includes water used directly by individuals and businesses and also the amount consumed indirectly to produce imported as well as California-made goods. About 44 million acre-feet of water is required to produce the goods and services that are imported and consumed in the state, according to the report.

“Overall we’re a net importer of water,” Heather Cooley, co-director of the institute’s water program, said by phone. “We’re actually importing water in the form of our goods in California.”

More than 90 percent of the water footprint is associated with agricultural, meat and dairy products, 4 percent with household use and 3 percent with products such as clothes and electronics, according to the study. Additionally, about half of the estimate is associated with water use in other U.S. states and 11 percent with use in Canada, Mexico and China.

The data suggests that “we’re vulnerable to water supply constraints in other parts of the world,” Cooley said. “It does affect us indirectly because of where we’re sourcing our goods.”

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