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Global groundwater use outpaces supply

Measure reveals unsustainable use of world's aquifers

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5:06pm, August 8, 2012

A handful of thirsty countries are guzzling their groundwater reserves much faster than those resources can be renewed.

India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Mexico, and the United States lead the global pack of water-thirsty nations, researchers report online August 8 in Nature. Irrigation for agriculture drives much of the demand, says hydrogeologist and study coauthor Tom Gleeson of McGill University in Montreal.

He and colleagues devised a new “groundwater footprint” measure to evaluate the sustainability of withdrawals from the worl

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