Beep!! Beep!! The sound of the alarm wakes you up from your slumberland paradise. You drag yourself out of bed and stumble into the bathroom to wash up. At one turn of the handle fresh, clean water comes flowing from the faucet.

Have you ever stopped to think about where that water comes from and just how it makes its way into your home?  In this section we will take a look at where we get our water and how it is purified for our use. Let’s take a trip!

Where do we get our water?  

Cities tap their water from lakes and rivers or from the ground. (Maybe more on ground water and water cycle) Here in San Diego, we receive an average of only 10 inches of rain each year. Incredibly, our local water resources provide only 10 percent of the total need! Since San Diego has few streams or natural lakes, this 10 percent that makes up our local water supply comes primarily from ground water. So where does San Diego get the other 90 percent of its water?

Well, the city purchases the rest through the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. The water comes from Lake Oroville in northern California and/or the Colorado River by way of large pipes called aqueducts.

Miami, Honolulu, San Antonio and Mexico City depend mostly on groundwater sources. Chicago, Montreal, Quebec, Toronto, St. Louis, and Pittsburgh are on the shores of rivers or lakes, so they use surface water. Cities such as New York, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Denver have to bring surface water through pipes for many miles.

Read More About Water Quality