Friday, March 31, 2023

As the Colorado River shrinks, Washington prepares to restrict water

washingtonNegotiators say the seven states that rely on water from the shrinking Colorado River are unlikely to agree to voluntary reductions in their water use, prompting the federal government to cut water supplies to 40 million Americans for the first time. I was forced to

The Interior Department asked states to voluntarily submit a plan by January 31 to collectively cut the amount of water being extracted from the Colorado. The demand for those cuts, on a scale unparalleled in US history, was fueled by sharp drops in Lake Mead and Lake Powell, which provide water and electricity to Arizona, Nevada and Southern California. Due to drought, climate change and population growth, the water level in the lakes has dropped.

“Think of the Colorado River Basin as a slow-moving disaster,” said Kevin Moran, who leads state and federal water policy advocacy at the Environmental Defense Fund. “We are truly at a moment of reckoning.”

Negotiators say the chances of a voluntary agreement appear bleak. It will mark the second time in six months that Colorado River states, which also include Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming, have missed a deadline for consensus on cuts sought by the Biden administration to avoid catastrophic failure of the river system. went.

Without an agreement, the Ministry of the Interior, which manages the river’s flow, must make the cuts. This would break with a centuries-old tradition of states determining how to share river waters. And all of this will guarantee that the administration’s increasingly urgent efforts to save Colorado will get bogged down in lengthy legal challenges.

The Colorado River crisis is the latest example of how climate change is taking a toll on the foundations of American life, not just physical infrastructure like dams and reservoirs, but also the legal foundations that make those systems work.

The century-old law, which gives users of the Colorado River different preferences based on how long they have used the water, runs against a competing philosophy, which says that as the climate changes, water The deduction should be distributed on the basis of practicability. ,

The outcome of that dispute would shape the future of the American Southwest.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
Latest news
Related news