Tag Archive for 'hoover dam'

Las Vegas Accused of Engineering Massive Water Grab: Is This the Future of the West?

Photo retrieved from: www.alternet.org

“When groundwater reserves ran low in the 1940s, the region turned to Lake Mead. Today, the Las Vegas area gets 90 percent of its water from the no-longer-very-mighty Colorado River as it is corralled behind Hoover Dam in Lake Mead. And now that’s threatened. A new federal study released in December found that the over-allocated Colorado River will be further stretched by climate change, drought and climbing populations. By 2060, the river will be short of what its dependents in seven U.S. states need by 3.2 million acre-feet a year. (An acre-foot of water is roughly enough for one suburban family per year.)

So what’s a city — or really, its water manager — to do? A smart gambler wouldn’t bet on the Colorado.

SNWA is in the midst of an $800 million project to insert another “straw” into Lake Mead. This is the third intake pipe built for the lake — the last two proved not deep enough to keep up with the lake’s falling levels. But this is just part of the plan. Another part comes with a bigger pricetag — estimated as high as $15 billion — and involves building hundreds of miles of water pipelines and related infrastructure to tap water from four rural valleys in eastern Nevada’s White Pine and Lincoln counties.”

Read more: Alternet