Click the link to read the article on the WUNC website (Kirk Siegler). Here’s an excerpt:
SIEGLER: It’s not? Kmiec says there are two big reasons why. The first is aggressive conservation, like water recycling. Tucson uses the same amount of water as it did in the 1980s, yet it’s added 200,000 more people.
KMIEC: It’s all about adaptation and making sure you – the water that you use, particularly in the desert, is for what you need.
SIEGLER: But the other even bigger reason why Kmiec isn’t up all night worrying…
KMIEC: Because we’ve banked more than 5 1/2 years of excess Colorado River water in these aquifers already.
SIEGLER: You can think of it like a secret reservoir hidden underneath this vast Sonoran desert with its blazing sun and saguaro cactus.
KMIEC: It looks like about a 40-acre basin, the one we’re standing next to.
SIEGLER: This basin is mostly dried dirt, with occasional stocks of green grass from recent monsoons – not exactly what you picture when you think of a city’s water plant, though another basin in front of us does have some water.
KMIEC: We fill these large reservoirs up. They look like small lakes. But what’s actually happening is the water is slowly going down and percolating into the aquifer and turning into groundwater.