Evaluating Conservation Potential in Agricultural and Municipal Water Use in South Florida


R. N. Palmer

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010: Challenges of Change


American Society of Civil Engineers

First page number:


Last page number:



A System Dynamics model is developed for South Florida to capture the complex interrelationships between water availability and competing water demands for municipal, agriculture, and environmental needs. The policies of introducing low flow appliances, xeriscaping, and pricing are tested for their effectiveness in reducing municipal water demand. The policies of area reduction, micro irrigation, and crop substitution are tested for their effectiveness in reducing agricultural water demand. Performance criteria of reliability, resilience, and vulnerability are used to measure the effectiveness of policies. Policies are also evaluated for their impact on environmental flow requirements. Model is calibrated for population growth, municipal water demand, crop area, agricultural water demand, and water levels in Lake Okeechobee from 1980 to 2005, and simulation are carried out till 2030 on a monthly time step. The status-quo simulations show a reduction in environmental flows after 2010 that leads to an increase in the number of incidences when environmental flow requirements are not met. Policies tested show potential for reduction in both municipal and agricultural water demands and an improvement in environmental flows.


Groundwater flow; Groundwater flow--Environmental aspects; Microirrigation; Municipal water supply; Municipal water supply—Management; Water; Water demand management; Water-supply; Water-supply—Management; Water-supply; Agricultural; Xeriscaping


Civil and Environmental Engineering | Civil Engineering | Construction Engineering and Management | Environmental Engineering | Environmental Sciences | Water Resource Management




Conference held: Providence, Rhode Island, United States, May 16-20, 2010


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