SCIENCE TO SUPPORT THE MANAGEMENT OF WESTERN WATER
The development of water supplies seems to progress through predictable phases: early development using gravity, construction and dependence upon technology, conjunctive use, and ultimately to some new level of sustainable use. The scientific data and information needed to support each phase of water development have changed and grown in complexity and sophistication. For example, conjunctive use is the recognition that surface water and ground water are in hydrologic connection and must be managed more holistically. This awareness is relatively recent, and the analytical tools necessary to construct unified water budgets and predictive models are only now being developed. To achieve sustainability, integrated science is being called upon to better quantify and monitor changes in the hydrologic system, the physical habitat requirements of stream and riparian ecosystems, and the life-sustaining needs of individual species being affected or in danger of extinction. The use of scientific information will be examined for the development and management of western water supplies, and the needs, as yet unmet, to achieve sustainable use and protection of sensitive riparian ecosystems.