Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1029/2019WR024894
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) A data-driven framework to characterize state-level water use in the United States
Author Wongso, E.; Nateghi, R.; Zaitchik, B.; Quiring, S.; Kumar, R. ORCID logo
Source Titel Water Resources Research
Year 2020
Department CHS
Volume 56
Issue 9
Page From e2019WR024894
Language englisch
Keywords Sustainable water‐use; Water analytics; Machine learning; Water Consumption
Abstract Access to credible estimates of water‐use are critical for making optimal operational decisions and investment plans to ensure reliable and affordable provisioning of water. Furthermore, identifying the key predictors of water use is important for regulators to promote sustainable development policies to reduce water use. In this paper, we propose a data‐driven framework, grounded in statistical learning theory, to develop a rigorously evaluated predictive model of state‐level, per capita water use in the US as a function of various geographic, climatic and socioeconomic variables. Specifically, we compare the accuracy of various statistical methods in predicting the state‐level, per capita water use and find that the model based on the Random Forest algorithm outperforms all other models. We then leverage the Random Forest model to identify key factors associated with high water‐usage intensity among different sectors in the US. More specifically, irrigated farming, thermoelectric energy generation, and urbanization were identified as the most water‐intensive anthropogenic activities, on a per capita basis. Among the climate factors, precipitation was found to be a key predictor of per capita water use, with drier conditions associated with higher water usage. Overall, our study highlights the utility of leveraging data‐driven modeling to gain valuable insights related to the water use patterns across expansive geographical areas.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Wongso, E., Nateghi, R., Zaitchik, B., Quiring, S., Kumar, R. (2020):
A data-driven framework to characterize state-level water use in the United States
Water Resour. Res. 56 (9), e2019WR024894 10.1029/2019WR024894