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  • Gustavo Bernal Torres

A Water War Is Brewing Over the Dwindling Colorado River

Diminished by climate change and overuse, the river can no longer provide the water states try to take from it.


  • I came to this place because the Colorado River system is in a state of collapse. It is a collapse hastened by climate change but also a crisis of management. In 1922, the seven states in the river basin signed a compact splitting the Colorado equally between its upper and lower halves; later, they promised additional water to Mexico, too. Near the middle, they put Lake Powell, a reserve for the northern states, and Lake Mead, a storage node for the south. Over time, as an overheating environment has collided with overuse, the lower half — primarily Arizona and California — has taken its water as if everything were normal, straining both the logic and the legal interpretations of the compact.

  • Here’s the terrible truth: There is no such thing as a return to normal on the Colorado River, or to anything that resembles the volumes of water its users are accustomed to taking from it.


Source: https://www.propublica.org/article/colorado-river-water-uncompahgre-california-arizona

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