aqui·fer | \ˈa-kwə-fər, ˈä-\

Definition of aquifer 

: a water-bearing stratum of permeable rock, sand, or gravel

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Other Words from aquifer

aquiferous \a-ˈkwi-fə-rəs, ä- \ adjective

Aquifer and Agriculture

The vast but relatively shallow Ogallala Aquifer lies beneath the Great Plains, under portions of eight states. Its thickness ranges from a few feet to more than a thousand feet. The Ogallala yields about 30 percent of the nation's groundwater used for irrigation in agriculture, and provides drinking water for most of the people within the area. But for many years more water has been extracted from the Ogallala than has been returned, and the situation today is of great concern.

Examples of aquifer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

That's become an expensive necessity now that his wells have started drawing salt water as the Mediterranean leaches into the barren aquifers below. NBC News, "Cyprus turns off taps to farmers as fresh water levels drop," 22 June 2018 These steep-sided, straitjacketed streams lost the ability to spill onto their floodplains and recharge aquifers. Ben Goldfarb, Science | AAAS, "Beaver dams without beavers? Artificial logjams are a popular but controversial restoration tool," 7 June 2018 California farmers are currently experimenting with cover crops to hold water and improve soil, and testing ways to recharge aquifers before the new state law bans excessive groundwater pumping. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "Farming A Warming Planet: An Interview Nathanael Johnson," 31 May 2018 Sewage and seawater seep into Gaza’s depleted aquifer, rendering most water supplies unfit for human consumption, according to the UN. The Economist, "Deadly protests on Gaza’s border with Israel," 17 May 2018 That affects water utilities, businesses and others who pump directly from the aquifer. Austin Horn, San Antonio Express-News, "After a hot and dry June, the forecast is largely unchanged," 4 July 2018 These satellites are sensitive enough to detect the changing levels of ice at the Earth’s poles, determine how much water is stored in underground aquifers, or track the movement of magma beneath the Earth's surface. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "NASA's New Climate Satellites Are Pioneering Laser Rangefinding Tech," 10 July 2018 The aquifer, which supplies 60 percent of San Antonio’s drinking water in non-drought years, is more than 17 feet below average for this time of year. Austin Horn, San Antonio Express-News, "Rain to come after long dry spell, but will it be enough to stop a drought?," 14 June 2018 Meantime the study also revealed a key risk to the Msambweni aquifer, Wara said. Isaiah Esipisu, The Christian Science Monitor, "In sustainability search, Kenya studies the unknown depths of its aquifers," 2 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aquifer.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of aquifer

1897, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aquifer

New Latin, from Latin aqua + -fer

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Statistics for aquifer

Last Updated

13 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for aquifer

The first known use of aquifer was in 1897

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English Language Learners Definition of aquifer

: a layer of rock or sand that can absorb and hold water

More from Merriam-Webster on aquifer

Nglish: Translation of aquifer for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about aquifer

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