Dangerously low water levels in the Western US's dams and reservoirs are forcing the federal government to make a tough decision.
We all know of the crazy amount of snow and rain California has received this year, and it is a relief considering the length of our dry spell. Unfortunately, this does not put the western US in the clear as far as our 23-year drought goes. Dams and reservoirs are still at critically low levels, regardless of the intense weather we have endured, but the federal government has a plan to slow down the extreme water deficiency.
Earlier this month, the federal government presented two options to prevent the Colorado River’s reservoirs from becoming alarmingly low. Either way, water cuts are the solution, but the decision comes down to where these cuts will be made. Should the water-rights priority system be used and just make cuts along the Southwest, or do they reduce the amount of water usage across the board?
Regardless of how the decision goes, California is in jeopardy. Along with Arizona and Nevada, we receive the largest portion of water from the Colorado River, and if an across-the-board cut is chosen, our state will take the hardest hit, particularly in agricultural regions. However, these cuts are necessary to prevent water levels from becoming so low that dams in the region are unable to produce power.
As of right now, nothing is set in stone. The government plans to keep the discussion going and make a final decision later this summer. Who knows, maybe there will be a solution in between the two being proposed. Whatever the outcome, it will depend on the projected water levels of the upcoming years.
Check out the full story, written by Ian James at the Los Angeles Times!
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