An area’s water table can be severely depleted even when there is no drought at all. For example, the immense Ogallala Aquifer beneath the Midwestern United States has been used for roughly fifty years to supply water for arid states like Texas, and for agriculture in the nation’s “bread basket.” The fresh-water, underground aquifer was created millions of years ago, and is not replenished by rainfall or streams. In 2008 alone some areas of the Ogallala Aquifer dropped five feet because of irrigation drains.
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