Kansans discuss declining Ogallala aquifer
Farmers and government officials are meeting in Colby, Kansas today (Thursday) to discuss the dwindling Ogallala Aquifer.
The aquifer has been declining for decades. The rate of decline slowed from 1970 to 2000, but it accelerated again after 2000 when another drought cycle hit western Kansas. Tests in January showed the aquifer had dropped more than five feet in some Kansas locations in a single year. Officials say the aquifer generally recharges only a half-inch a year.
According to wire reports, roughly 94 percent of the groundwater is used for irrigation in Kansas, which supports livestock, meatpacking, ethanol and other agricultural industries.