The Water Conservation Tool Box was developed by the City of Ramsey's Environmental Policy Board.
Ramsey is located on the Anoka Sand Plain and, as the name implies, is dominated by mostly sandy soils. Sandy soils have low water holding capacity, so water used to irrigate yards moves through soil and out of the root zone area quickly. Summer lawn watering in Ramsey almost triples water use to over 5 million gallons per day, which has contributed to Ramsey being identified as one of the largest users of non-consumptive water in the metro.
Demand for Water
As Ramsey's population continues to grow, the demand for water will also grow. Ramsey's population is forecasted to increase by roughly 12,000 people by the year 2020, putting tremendous pressure on the groundwater supply, or aquifer. As demand for water continues to rise, the aquifer, our current source of drinking water, will be depleted more and more. While groundwater is replenished by precipitation, activities such as pumping (wells), increasing impervious surfaces (roads, rooftops, driveways, etc.), and climatic changes alter recharge rates, and potentially diminish the recharge of aquifers. View information on groundwater replenishment (PDF).
Groundwater provides a source of drinking water and also maintains stream flow, lake levels and wetlands. Searching for and identifying ways to maintain and replenish groundwater supplies are extremely important. As the demand for water grows, Ramsey will start looking at alternative water supply sources and may need to explore using water from the Mississippi River for its domestic water supply. Visit the Minnesota DNR website for more groundwater information.