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The energy trade-offs of adapting to a water-scarce future: case study of Los Angeles


  • Kelly Twomey Sanders


Increasing water competition, population growth and global climate change will intensify the tension between water and energy resources in arid climates of the world, since energy costs underscore the challenges facing water security in dry regions. In few places is the tension between water and energy resources more pronounced than in Los Angeles, California. This article analyzes the city’s current water supply and estimates its future energy requirements based on water supply projections from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. Results suggest that while increasing local water management strategies could reduce the future energy intensity of the water supply, an increased reliance on water transfers could worsen its future energy intensity.

Suggested Citation

  • Kelly Twomey Sanders, 2016. "The energy trade-offs of adapting to a water-scarce future: case study of Los Angeles," International Journal of Water Resources Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(3), pages 362-378, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:cijwxx:v:32:y:2016:i:3:p:362-378
    DOI: 10.1080/07900627.2015.1095079

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    Cited by:

    1. Measrainsey Meng & Mo Chen & Kelly T. Sanders, 2016. "Evaluating the Feasibility of Using Produced Water from Oil and Natural Gas Production to Address Water Scarcity in California’s Central Valley," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(12), pages 1-13, December.

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