Lower Basin States

September 7, 2016--The forecast for Lake Mead: Hot and dry with plenty of anxiety (Los Angeles Times)

A reckoning arrives every August for the Colorado River and the 40 million people across the West who depend on it. After water managers measure annual inflows and outflows and do their best to estimate future precipitation in places as far-flung as northwestern Wyoming and southwestern New Mexico, they make a pronouncement that once was arcane but has become increasingly prominent —


September 5, 2016--Fed's back off from Lake Mead water demand (Tucson.com)

It sounded too good to be true — an official forecast that 2016 water use in Arizona, California and Nevada will be the lowest since 1992. That forecast from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation was too good to be true — by the bureau’s own admission. It was widely reported recently as a sign of major progress toward conservation.


August 20, 2016--“Climate change is water change” — why the Colorado River system is headed for trouble (Washington Post)

There’s good news and bad news for the drought-stricken Colorado River system, according to projections just released in a new federal report from the Bureau of Reclamation, manager of dams, powerplants and canals. The report predicts that Lake Mead — the river system’s largest reservoir, supplying water to millions of people in Nevada, Arizona, C


July 21, 2016--Arizona earns federal assurances on Lake Mead water (Tucson.com)

For now, water that Arizona and two other Lower Colorado River Basin states store in Lake Mead is safe from another state’s clutches, the Interior Department says. The commitment, contained in a letter that Deputy Interior Secretary Michael Connor wrote this week, protects this water only through 2016.


July 16, 2016--Why water management in the Upper Colorado River Basin is so different from the Lower (InkStain)

In the Lower Colorado River Basin water management is a fundamentally distributive task. Water is released from Lake Mead in bulk and then distributed outward at a relatively small number of diversion points, tightly measured and well understood.


May 19, 2016--‘Early warning signal’: Lake Mead hits historic low (Las Vegas Sun)

Lake Mead’s surface Wednesday evening hit its lowest level since the man-made reservoir was created by the building of the Hoover Dam in 1935. The surface of the lake — a critical source of water for Nevada, California, Arizona and Mexico — is expected to drop lower in the coming weeks, but rebound before the beginning of next year, when jurisdictions would be asked to ac


May 15, 2016--Meeting the demands of the Colorado River (Grand Junction Sentinel)

Heavy attention on California’s sustained and severe drought, recent coverage of water sharing agreements in the Lower Colorado River Basin, and most recently an insightful piece in this newspaper from Colorado River Water Conservation District General Manager Eric Kuhn (Sixteen years of drought in the Colorado River Basin: Reality or talking point?


May 11, 2016--Nevada prepared for more Lake Mead cuts without ‘drastic steps’ (Las Vegas Sun)

Lake Mead is expected to surpass its historic low after next Wednesday. By the end of June, it is expected to have dropped to its lowest level since the man-made reservoir was created by the completion of the Hoover Dam in 1935.


CRRG Reports: Lake Mead Structural Deficit and a Call for Unified Management of Colorado River

A December 2015 report by the Colorado River Research Group (CRRG) calls for enacting strategies to deal with the structural deficit in Lake Mead. The lower basin reservoir of Lake Mead receives about 9 million acre-feet (AF) of water annually primarily the upper basin state’s Lake Powell. However, when evaporative losses are factored in, Lake Mead loses 10.2 million AF each year. This annual shortfall of 1.2 million AF of water has come to be known as the structural deficit. According to one of the report authors, Doug Kenney, while this is primarily a lower basin issue, the faster the structural deficit pulls down Lake Mead, more legal and political pressure will be on the upper basin states.


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