Water supplies in the east metro: by the numbers

Green lawns in Hugo, one of a dozen cities that has been pumping more water from the Prairie du Chien-Jordan aquifer. The city's population has more than doubled in the past decade. (MPR Photo/Nate Minor)

Numbers were everywhere as I reported my story  on how to get some of the east metro suburbs to use less groundwater. The U.S. Geological Survey has linked increased pumping of groundwater in those communities to dropping water levels in White Bear Lake.

We don't like to bombard listeners with a lot of numbers in our radio pieces, so I've collected some of the more interesting figures here:


45 million: Average production in gallons per day St. Paul Regional Water Services in 2012 to serve more than 415,000 in St. Paul and half a dozen suburbs.

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58 million: The highest average annual production in gallons per day for St. Paul Regional Water Services, which happened in 1988.


6: The number of feet White Bear Lake has dropped in the past decade.


60,000: The number of people the northeast metro is expected to add by 2030.


<1: The percentage of water flowing on the Mississippi, St. Croix and Minnesota rivers that’s being tapped by the Twin Cities metro area for drinking water.


7,000: The number of groundwater observation wells the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources wants to monitor groundwater supplies throughout the state. The DNR only has about 10 percent of that now.


450 million: The number of gallons of water being used in the Twin Cities metro area daily. Only 120 million gallons per day comes from surface water. The rest is groundwater.


32 million: The number of gallons the city of Hugo expects will be saved annually by using stormwater instead of tap water for irrigation at the Oneka Ridge Golf Course.


(Sources: The Metropolitan Council, St. Paul Regional Water Services and the City of Hugo.)