a lowering of water surface level, as in a well.
a reduction or depletion: a drawdown of weapons in an arms-limitation plan.

1780–90, for literal sense; draw + down1

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
drawdown (ˈdrɔːˌdaʊn)
1.  a depletion or reduction, for example of supplies
2.  a continuous decline in an investment or fund, usually expressed as a percentage between its highest and lowest levels
3.  the intentional draining of a body of water such as a lake or reservoir, to a given depth

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

of troops, by 1991, in reference to the end of the Cold War; from draw (v.) + down (adv.). Earlier of wells (c.1900).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
drawdown   (drô'doun')  Pronunciation Key 
  1. A lowering of the water level in a reservoir or other body of water, especially as the result of withdrawal.

  2. The difference in elevation between the level of water in a well and the level of groundwater in the area in which the well is located.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
Though he spoke in favor of a drawdown, he voted against the withdrawal of
They look to me to land a big return, but without risk or drawdown.
How quickly the drawdown takes place is the subject of behind-the-scenes
The drop in payroll employment was due, in no small part, to the continuing
  drawdown in the temporary census workforce.
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