Title

Comparative Evaluation of Groundwater Management Practices of the Ogallala Aquifer

Date of Award

5-20-2010

Document Type

Capstone Project

Disciplines

Environmental Policy & Mgmt

Degree Name

Master of Applied Science

Department

Environmental Policy & Mgmt

Advisor

Steven Bissell

Keywords

aquifer; groundwater; high; irrigation; management; Ogallala; plains; policy; water

Abstract

Mining of groundwater, or extracting a larger quantity of water than what is naturally returned to the aquifer through recharge, has been occurring for more than fifty years. The minimal natural recharge to the Ogallala Aquifer makes sustainable use of this resource a daunting task for states across the High Plains that rely on it to support their well-established ways of life. This task is compounded when considering the different combinations of federal, state and local governance, as well as regional economic and social frameworks that each state overlaying the aquifer experiences. This project critically examines factors contributing to groundwater management successes and failures of three states that overlay the majority (87%) of this resource: Nebraska, Kansas and Texas.

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