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Officials From Nevada Present Ideas for Lake Mead Reductions

By TheNevadaGlobeStaff, January 10, 2023 6:46 am

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (702 Times, NV Globe) – The Southern Nevada Water Authority is speaking out and presenting its suggestions to the Bureau of Reclamation on how it thinks the Southwest can conserve Lake Mead and hundreds of billions of gallons of water annually.

Southern Nevada, Arizona, California, and Mexico have been requested by the federal government to work together and submit suggestions by late January. The Southern Colorado River Agreement participants have been told by the federal government to find measures to reduce two to four million acre-feet of water. 325,000 gallons make up one acre-foot.

In order to halt the lake’s elevation drop, one plan suggests increasing when new limitations begin to apply. The SNWA suggests that, starting in 2024, additional cutbacks will be made when Lake Mead reaches a height of 1,025 feet.

At 1,090 feet, harsher regulations take effect.

The deterioration of Lake Mead cannot be stopped by those shortages quickly enough. Therefore, we must start making bigger cuts earlier, according to Colby Pellegrino, deputy general manager of resources at SNWA.

The SNWA further suggests that each member state factor “evaporation losses” into its overall consumption and allocation since, according to its study, the losses are significant.

According to the SNWA’s investigation, 1.5 million acre-feet of water are lost annually as they pass through the five reaches and into the states of Nevada, Arizona, California, and Mexico. 771,486 acre-feet altogether vanish en way to Southern California, 471,091 acre-feet to Arizona, 352,926 acre-feet to Mexico, and 17,570 acre-feet to Southern Nevada.

As stated by Pellegrino, member nations must prepare for evaporation because it is a natural process of the river system.

According to the Bureau of Reclamation, there must be two to four million acre-feet of annual permanent reductions. Our main objective is to get our water consumption much closer to what Mother Nature provides, whether it is through evaporation or another method, she added.

Pellegrino responded to a frequently asked question: Is Nevada conserving water more than the other partners?

“That’s one of the inquiries we are asked the most.

I think what’s different about communities is how they can adapt, she added, pointing to initiatives made by other organizations in the face of a rapidly expanding population.

The SNWA does want the federal government to acknowledge how Southern Nevada consumes less water than it receives, prepares for it, and maintains its allotments.

Accordingly, she explained, “our community doesn’t have to take last-minute efforts to be prepared to adjust, like other villages on the river, as long as our water usage remains below, whatever that threshold is from our allotment.”

“So, that serves as the community’s buffer, which we have established. Other localities lack such cushion, according to Pellegrino.

The SNWA also requests guarantees from the federal government that other states won’t exploit Nevada’s excess. In Lake Mead, Nevada is the owner of 1 million acre-feet of water.

The federal government will decide on water restrictions this summer.

Credits: FOX 5 VEGAS

Copyright 2023 702 Times, NV Globe. All rights reserved.

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