Metro Water District Issues Long-Range Water Demand Forecast

Contact: Paul Donsky
Phone: 404-463-3192

Atlanta Region’s Water Use Falls as Conservation Measures Take Hold

(Atlanta, August 26) – Metro Atlanta residents will use approximately 25 percent less water in 2050 than was projected in 2009, according to a long-range forecast presented today at a meeting of the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District Governing Board.

The forecast reflects successful conservation efforts that have already helped dramatically reduce water usage across the region, such as the replacement of inefficient toilets, improved leak detection, and tiered pricing structures with rates that increase as the volume of water use rises.

“This forecast underscores Metro Atlanta’s proven national leadership in water stewardship and water loss prevention,” said Boyd Austin, chairman of the Metro Water District’s Governing Board.

The forecast will inform the Metro Water District’s next long-range water plan, which is in the process of being updated for approval in 2016. The forecast incorporates economic and population projections as well as water utility billing data to estimate future residential and non-residential water needs.

“In addition to the Metro Water District’s efforts, Georgia’s Water Stewardship Act has been instrumental in improving water efficiency locally and statewide,” Chairman Austin said. “This has been accomplished through measures such as mandating low-flow toilets and shower heads in new construction.”

By 2050, the 15-county Metro Water District daily water demand is now projected to be between 862 and 898 million gallons, based on two population scenarios. That’s an approximately 25 percent reduction from the District’s 2009 forecast, which projected daily water use of 1.2 billion gallons in 2050. Two-thirds or more of the water withdrawn in the Metro Water District is returned to the region’s lakes and streams.

“With each Metro Water District plan, the data we use to create the forecast improves,” said Katherine Zitsch, Director of the Metro Water District. “The most recent data highlight the effectiveness of our conservation and efficiency measures, which are so vital to our future and our economy.”

About the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District (Metro Water District)
The Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District is the planning organization dedicated to developing comprehensive regional and watershed-specific water resources plans to be implemented by local governments in the 15-county metro Atlanta region, which include Bartow, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Hall, Henry, Paulding and Rockdale counties. These plans protect water quality and public water supplies, protect recreational values of the waters and minimize potential adverse impacts of development on waters in and downstream of the region.