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Water use in Washington, 2015

September 24, 2018


Water use in the State of Washington has evolved during the past century from small withdrawals used for domestic and stock needs to the diverse needs of current public supply systems, domestic water users, irrigation projects, industrial plants, and aquaculture industries. Increasing demand for water makes the accountability of water use an important issue.

A few State and local agencies in Washington collect water-use information for specific categories of water use; currently, only the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) compiles cumulative water-use information across the State for a comprehensive range of uses.

Since 1950, on a 5-year cycle, the USGS has compiled and published estimates of water withdrawal and use for specific categories aggregated at the county, State, and national level. The information is shared publicly through the USGS Water Use in the United States website ( and national publications that detail water use definitions, categories, trends, and data for every state. The data are compiled individually by each state from available sources, and are augmented by estimates from national models for categories that have limited data. The USGS Washington Water Science Center is responsible for compiling their estimates and maintains the State water use webpage ( of State-level information and links to the national program.

Publication Year 2018
Title Water use in Washington, 2015
DOI 10.3133/fs20183058
Authors Elisabeth T. Fasser
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Fact Sheet
Series Number 2018-3058
Index ID fs20183058
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Washington Water Science Center