Water consumption flow chart

There are four flows of water: groundwater, fresh and saline surface water and drinking water. Abstracted surface water and groundwater are used for different purposes. Most groundwater goes to water companies, which prepare it into drinking water and distribute it further for domestic and industrial use. Not all groundwater goes via water companies; for example, agriculture abstracts groundwater for crop irrigation. Surface water is mainly abstracted by the energy sector and used as cooling water, but the chemical industry and refineries also use a relatively large amount of surface water for cooling (other economy).