Quantified Scenarios of 2030
California Water Demand
Published in: California Water Plan Update 2005: A Framework for Action. Department of Water Resources Bulletin 160-05 (Sacramento, CA: California Department of Water Resources, 2005), v. 4, Dec. 2005, 71 p
Posted on RAND.org on December 01, 2005
This article reports on the preliminary results of a collaborative project to: (1) build a simple model to estimate scenarios of future water demand in California, and (2) use this model to produce quantitative estimates of four water demand scenarios, three of which are designed to reflect the narrative scenarios developed for the 2005 California Water Plan. The model provides estimates of the quantity of water demanded out to the year 2030 under specified demographic, economic, agricultural, and water management conditions. Some of these conditions are under the influence of water managers, such as the price for water, the behavior of water users, and the technical efficiency of water processing and distribution equipment. These scenarios of future water demand, therefore, should not be used solely to estimate future supply needs. Instead these scenarios should provide a starting point from which to evaluate various management options including (1) moderating water demand through demand management programs, changes in water prices, and efficiency programs and (2) increasing effective water supplies through urban water reuse facilities, groundwater reclamation, recharge, and conjunctive use, increased water storage and conveyance, and desalinization.