There Is Enough Groundwater in Delaware River Basin to Last Until 2060

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According to a new report by Delaware River Basin Commission, Delaware River Basin has enough groundwater to last until 2060, even through possibly dry years, writes Zoë Read for the WHYY.

This is good news for more than 13 million people across four states, including Pennsylvania, who get their drinking water from the Delaware River Basin.

“In certain areas of the basin, specifically in southern Delaware, South Jersey, it’s the sole source of drinking water,” said Gerald Kauffman, director of the University of Delaware Water Resources Center. “So it’s very important to protect.”

Only five percent of water withdrawals from Delaware River Basin are groundwater. However, it still represents a critical water source. In 2020, for example, 450 million gallons of groundwater were withdrawn from the basin. About 75 percent of that was used by public water suppliers and private wells.

“Groundwater is kind of that forgotten source of water because it’s under the ground and we don’t see it with our eyes,” said Sara Sayed, one of the report’s authors.

Water quality is also an important factor. In the case of a contaminated aquifer, the amount of available water gets reduced.

Read more about the Delaware River Basin in the WHYY.

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