A National View of the Irrigation Resources to Grow Biofuel and the Groundwater Role
National Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture
Irrigated cropland and associated water supplies, including groundwater resources, are currently being used for biofuel production. This presentation provides a national view of water and land resources used for irrigation, with an emphasis on groundwater use. The focus of the data-driven presentation is on current biofuel production in the form of corn-based ethanol, but implications will be drawn for possible future cellulosic ethanol feedstock. The presentation utilizes secondary data sources from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Geological Survey to provide a national view of the water (surface and groundwater) and land resource activities. State- and crop-level data are used to illustrate the consequences of ramping up biofuel feedstock production on crop water applications with implications for the utilization of groundwater resources.