Considering the water reserve dropped from 94% to 50% within 20 years, I'm pretty sure it won't take nearly that long before things go really south for the region. Also, keep in mind that over 40 million people rely on that water supply for their tap. 40M without water sound way worse to me than some farming sectors do, though I admit I have no idea how many people and would be affected by that.
Depending on where in Australia, they could possibly get water from potential desalinization plants along the coast, while the same would be close to impossible for most of the mentioned region in the US to to the distance and topography.
Most farming doesnt happen near the coast area's.... and desalinization is expensive.
If farmers suddenly have to pay like ~3 times as much for water.... its gonna effect prices.
I think what will likely happend, is to reduce water waste & consumption in the mid west.... they will price hike it.
So it self adjusts (ei. people learn not to waste water, when it hit their pockets) and this will probably go some way, to aiding it.
And again, farming sector is a major part of water consumption.
Alot of them might just have to stop farming in those area's.
While the issue gets worse over time, its just about reduceing the amount consumed, to match the amount gained every year.
Currently the water consumption in the area is unsustainable.
The water issue in australia is that their running out of underground water pockets, to pump up water from.
Once its gone, its gone, and it can take 100's or 1000's of years before they fill up again.
You cant just say desalinization will fix that, when alot of the farming isnt near the ocean coasts.
The issue is the same though for both.
Gotta stop useing water like that, in those area's for farming sector, and stuff like watering the lawn.
And if people dont stop useing it like that, gotta hike up the price so they are forced to.
Necro-bump this 2020: http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/thread.php?id=229249
Bumb in 2021: http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9047071