Florida’s water balance is showing a loss | Ocala.com

By Robert L. Knight – Special to the Star-Banner – Published: Sunday, November 18, 2012 at 6:30 a.m.

Florida is blessed with an abundant freshwater income — an average of about 175 billion gallons per day (BGD). Yet, we are having serious trouble living within our means.A water balance is an analysis of the inflows and outflows, and the resulting change in the amount of water in storage (equivalent to the “balance” in a bank account).

For example, Florida’s water balance includes an estimated average inflow of 150 BGD from direct rainfall over the state’s 38 million acres of land, and 25 BGD from river and groundwater inflows from Georgia and Alabama (e.g., Apalachicola, Suwannee and Withlacoochee rivers).

During dry years, this inflow might decline by about one-third, while during wet years, it may increase by the same fraction.As in a family’s economy, Florida’s natural economy is dependent upon all of these inflows of water. Right off the top, about 107 BGD of these inflows is lost to evaporation and transpiration. While these losses may seem unnecessary, this is nature’s air conditioning, and Earth would be unlivable if evaporated water did not…

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