Water Required for Energy Generation in Colorado is Declining

New energy policies in Colorado are resulting in less water needed for the energy generation sector. In 2011, coal- and natural-gas-fired power plants in the State of Colorado consumed approximately 64,000 acre-feet (AF) of water. With state policies promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy, and retiring the state’s most carbon- and waterintensive power plants, Colorado’s energy sector likely will use even less water in the future. The trend in energy-related water use is an important consideration in evaluating Colorado’s future water demands, particularly for creating a new State Water Plan. Furthermore, new policies to promote water-efficient forms of energy generation can lead to additional future water savings, reducing the “gap” between future water demands and supplies in Colorado.

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