• Mark L. Johnson

Water Woes XV-Colorado River Crisis



Glen Canyon Dam In Dire Straits

Photo By Jim Quigley (May 2021)


Colorado River Crisis


The United States Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) issued the following letter on April 8, 2022. I urge you to read it as the situation with the Colorado River is dire.


2022-operations-letter-to-colorado-river-basin-states
.pdf
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The letter describes the real potential of disaster for the Colorado River system. The letter highlights are as follows:


  • Southwest is experiencing the driest conditions in 1,200 years

  • Best available science indicates that climate change will continue to adversely affect water supply conditions in the Southwest

  • USBR is working on yet another Drought Response Operation Plan

  • Additional actions are required to reduce the risk of Lake Powell dropping below elevation 3,490 feet--no hydroelectric power generation and water supply to City of Page (AZ) and the LeChee Chapter of Navajo Nation would not function

  • Western electrical grid could face uncertain risk and instability

  • Water and power supplies to the Southwest would be subject to increased operational uncertainty

  • Basin States and water users must conserve Colorado River water

  • Basin States requested to consider reducing Glen Canyon Dam releases to 7.0 million acre-feet, i.e., less water into Lake Mead causing more cut-backs to AZ, CA and NV.


Yet our Arizona water bureaucrats and local leaders tell us everything is hunky-dory. My friends, it is time for change. Stay tuned!