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DIRECTFLT
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Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 5:36 am

I'm for returning the beautiful Glen Canyon area to pre-dam conditions...

CBS Evening News

May 12, 2022 A decades-long drought is threatening Lake Powell, the nation's second largest reservoir. But as the water recedes, a canyon is being reborn. Ben Tracy takes a look.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jShDO9-dHwk
Last edited by qf789 on Fri May 13, 2022 10:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Spelling in title
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 12:49 pm

Perhaps another title can better fit the post and link. It was, I think The New Yorker which had an article on this about a year ago. It is becoming obvious that there may be enough water for one of the two lakes. Precipitation is not expected to improve according to current climate science. All of the major players in this are aware that there is no water to fill treaty allocations. So in a very real sense there is no war. As ever there are those, who in the face of all the facts, are believers that there really is enough water. Sad.
 
bpatus297
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 1:33 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
Perhaps another title can better fit the post and link. It was, I think The New Yorker which had an article on this about a year ago. It is becoming obvious that there may be enough water for one of the two lakes. Precipitation is not expected to improve according to current climate science. All of the major players in this are aware that there is no water to fill treaty allocations. So in a very real sense there is no war. As ever there are those, who in the face of all the facts, are believers that there really is enough water. Sad.


I have spent a large portion of my life in the Southwest. I am amazed at the amount of water used for landscape. Why in the world do people in Phoenix need grass in their front lawn? Heck, use artificial turf for the back yard, no need to cut it. You could remove a good chunk of the stress for water if people who live in the desert landscaped like they live in the desert. Tucson, Arizona and the folks who live there have actually made pretty decent strides with this concept, they are not perfect, but they are trying.
 
ltbewr
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 2:46 pm

There is from many archeological and more modern historical records of short, medium and long term cycles of droughts. The current severe dry cycle has likely been compounded by recent decades of the increase of average global warming. In California, about 10% of water use is in urban areas, 40% is with agriculture. Much of that agriculture is for water intensive crops like almonds but also for fruits, vegetables, other nuts grown year round and sent throughout the USA. California has made significant strides in reducing water use in agriculture but is isn't enough fast enough. Urban use has risen and needs to be reduced, in particular for landscaping although some is needed to retain soils in major rains.

Arizona's also needs to be face reality of too much water demand, complex and unsustainable water polices and agreements.that locals involved with agriculture will 'go to war' over to preserve their incomes.

We may have to shift more year round agriculture to protected facilities in cooler areas of the USA with more stable and less drought affected water supplies.
 
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Aaron747
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 2:52 pm

bpatus297 wrote:
frmrCapCadet wrote:
Perhaps another title can better fit the post and link. It was, I think The New Yorker which had an article on this about a year ago. It is becoming obvious that there may be enough water for one of the two lakes. Precipitation is not expected to improve according to current climate science. All of the major players in this are aware that there is no water to fill treaty allocations. So in a very real sense there is no war. As ever there are those, who in the face of all the facts, are believers that there really is enough water. Sad.


I have spent a large portion of my life in the Southwest. I am amazed at the amount of water used for landscape. Why in the world do people in Phoenix need grass in their front lawn? Heck, use artificial turf for the back yard, no need to cut it. You could remove a good chunk of the stress for water if people who live in the desert landscaped like they live in the desert. Tucson, Arizona and the folks who live there have actually made pretty decent strides with this concept, they are not perfect, but they are trying.


My parents were living in greater PHX when I was born there in the early 80s, and they said at that time almost everyone had a rocky desert-appropriate front garden. The big subdivisions that went in from the 90s on for whatever reason went to lawns. It's really dumb, and fairly simple to reverse, just as you say.
 
bpatus297
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 2:56 pm

Aaron747 wrote:
bpatus297 wrote:
frmrCapCadet wrote:
Perhaps another title can better fit the post and link. It was, I think The New Yorker which had an article on this about a year ago. It is becoming obvious that there may be enough water for one of the two lakes. Precipitation is not expected to improve according to current climate science. All of the major players in this are aware that there is no water to fill treaty allocations. So in a very real sense there is no war. As ever there are those, who in the face of all the facts, are believers that there really is enough water. Sad.


I have spent a large portion of my life in the Southwest. I am amazed at the amount of water used for landscape. Why in the world do people in Phoenix need grass in their front lawn? Heck, use artificial turf for the back yard, no need to cut it. You could remove a good chunk of the stress for water if people who live in the desert landscaped like they live in the desert. Tucson, Arizona and the folks who live there have actually made pretty decent strides with this concept, they are not perfect, but they are trying.


My parents were living in greater PHX when I was born there in the early 80s, and they said at that time almost everyone had a rocky desert-appropriate front garden. The big subdivisions that went in from the 90s on for whatever reason went to lawns. It's really dumb, and fairly simple to reverse, just as you say.


The newer artificial turf is pretty nice, especially compared to "astro-turf".
 
LittleFokker
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:01 pm

Aaron747 wrote:
bpatus297 wrote:
frmrCapCadet wrote:
Perhaps another title can better fit the post and link. It was, I think The New Yorker which had an article on this about a year ago. It is becoming obvious that there may be enough water for one of the two lakes. Precipitation is not expected to improve according to current climate science. All of the major players in this are aware that there is no water to fill treaty allocations. So in a very real sense there is no war. As ever there are those, who in the face of all the facts, are believers that there really is enough water. Sad.


I have spent a large portion of my life in the Southwest. I am amazed at the amount of water used for landscape. Why in the world do people in Phoenix need grass in their front lawn? Heck, use artificial turf for the back yard, no need to cut it. You could remove a good chunk of the stress for water if people who live in the desert landscaped like they live in the desert. Tucson, Arizona and the folks who live there have actually made pretty decent strides with this concept, they are not perfect, but they are trying.


My parents were living in greater PHX when I was born there in the early 80s, and they said at that time almost everyone had a rocky desert-appropriate front garden. The big subdivisions that went in from the 90s on for whatever reason went to lawns. It's really dumb, and fairly simple to reverse, just as you say.


Additionally, in the late 90s, Clark County (southern Nevada) passed an incentive program for the water district. All homeowners who converted their grass lawns to artificial turf or desert landscaping would get a tax credit to do so. Many of the golf courses in the valley also converted much of their non-essential grass rough to desert landscaping to take advantage. Some flaws with the implementation and exactly how much of a credit to give is debatable, but overall, the program was a tremendous success in reducing landscaping water demand in the valley. In fact, I believe it is now illegal for new build homes to have grass in their yards.
 
LittleFokker
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:06 pm

There are 14 dams along the Colorado River. At least one or two will need to come down. It's not just Lake Powell, I'm seeing so many sad pictures of how low the level of Lake Mead is. Hard to see Hoover (Boulder) Dam being the one coming down due to its historical significance as well as its role as a hydroelectric power dam and major power supplier for the southwest. But certainly, one or two need to be dismantled.
 
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ER757
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:12 pm

Yeah, lawns in the desert just don't make sense. And as I much as I love playing golf when I visit PHX or LAS (in winter anyway) lush golf courses there don't make sense either. And neither do all the extravagant water features at the Las Vegas hotels. The idea of draining Lake Powell to support Lake Mead is as interesting one, but what replaces the power generation of the Glen Canyon Dam? That may need to be addressed soon regardless
 
luckyone
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:15 pm

ER757 wrote:
Yeah, lawns in the desert just don't make sense. And as I much as I love playing golf when I visit PHX or LAS (in winter anyway) lush golf courses there don't make sense either. And neither do all the extravagant water features at the Las Vegas hotels. The idea of draining Lake Powell to support Lake Mead is as interesting one, but what replaces the power generation of the Glen Canyon Dam? That may need to be addressed soon regardless

It may be a while, but eventually LAS and PHX will outgrow their ability to finagle water sourcing. And there will be millions of people in serious trouble.
 
MaverickM11
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:40 pm

luckyone wrote:
ER757 wrote:
Yeah, lawns in the desert just don't make sense. And as I much as I love playing golf when I visit PHX or LAS (in winter anyway) lush golf courses there don't make sense either. And neither do all the extravagant water features at the Las Vegas hotels. The idea of draining Lake Powell to support Lake Mead is as interesting one, but what replaces the power generation of the Glen Canyon Dam? That may need to be addressed soon regardless

It may be a while, but eventually LAS and PHX will outgrow their ability to finagle water sourcing. And there will be millions of people in serious trouble.

It all reminds me of Florida and the mid Atlantic coast where people are demanding relief from rising insurance rates, when the underlying issue is the coastal properties are increasingly uninsurable. I'm sure FL and AZ leadership will come up with a constructive solution :duck:
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:44 pm

When I was at a conference in the mountains near Las Vegas in the 1980s we had an assignment to do research for one day. I chose to organize a group to look at the Las Vegas water district's efforts even then to switch over to low water residential yards. We also were told that those extravagant looking Casino water displays used a surprisingly low amounts of water. I can imagine a typical residence in desert areas having a small shaded oasis, say 10 by 12 feet - a little grass, a pond - along with a solar panel/small AC to blow cool air onto a couple chairs.
 
luckyone
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 3:53 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
When I was at a conference in the mountains near Las Vegas in the 1980s we had an assignment to do research for one day. I chose to organize a group to look at the Las Vegas water district's efforts even then to switch over to low water residential yards. We also were told that those extravagant looking Casino water displays used a surprisingly low amounts of water. I can imagine a typical residence in desert areas having a small shaded oasis, say 10 by 12 feet - a little grass, a pond - along with a solar panel/small AC to blow cool air onto a couple chairs.

The casinos get away with that because all that water is technically part of their fire suppression system -- or at least that's the line I've heard.

MaverickM11 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
ER757 wrote:
Yeah, lawns in the desert just don't make sense. And as I much as I love playing golf when I visit PHX or LAS (in winter anyway) lush golf courses there don't make sense either. And neither do all the extravagant water features at the Las Vegas hotels. The idea of draining Lake Powell to support Lake Mead is as interesting one, but what replaces the power generation of the Glen Canyon Dam? That may need to be addressed soon regardless

It may be a while, but eventually LAS and PHX will outgrow their ability to finagle water sourcing. And there will be millions of people in serious trouble.

It all reminds me of Florida and the mid Atlantic coast where people are demanding relief from rising insurance rates, when the underlying issue is the coastal properties are increasingly uninsurable. I'm sure FL and AZ leadership will come up with a constructive solution :duck:

Particularly with respect to Florida and Arizona, this obsession with large scale development solely based on cheap costs TODAY is going to be seriously problematic. Heck, maybe my move to the Great Lakes will prove brilliant in 30 years time.
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 4:38 pm

Whiskey’s for drinkin’, water’s for fightin’.

Yes, the older desert folks knew desert landscaping, come the unfamiliarity who want lawns, golf courses and drought is what happens.
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 7:49 pm

https://www.newyorker.com/news/dispatch ... Selections

I knew California Central Valley and the Sacramento Delta was in trouble, but the above link has the details. Scary.

ps - that bad news for California farmers is they only total 2% of California's economy. So far as CA is concerned they are expendable.
 
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DIRECTFLT
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 8:42 pm

Reuters May 12, 2022

Lake Mead’s water levels have plunged to their lowest in history, leading to fears of water restrictions across multiple U.S. states. Who gets cuts cut, what and when will be interesting to see how that pans out among the states...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZC-CTpeiTFg
 
phatfarmlines
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 8:53 pm

GalaxyFlyer wrote:
Whiskey’s for drinkin’, water’s for fightin’.

Yes, the older desert folks knew desert landscaping, come the unfamiliarity who want lawns, golf courses and drought is what happens.


When I lived in AZ, the newer homes seemed to adopt the "desert landscape" (rock/pebble landscape, etc). It was the older homes that had the levee-style irrigation system that flooded the yards.
 
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DIRECTFLT
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 9:22 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
We also were told that those extravagant looking Casino water displays used a surprisingly low amounts of water.

The Bellagio fountains recycle brackish water from wells located on their property.

luckyone wrote:
It may be a while, but eventually LAS and PHX will outgrow their ability to finagle water sourcing. And there will be millions of people in serious trouble.

Particularly with respect to Florida and Arizona, this obsession with large scale development solely based on cheap costs TODAY is going to be seriously problematic. Heck, maybe my move to the Great Lakes will prove brilliant in 30 years time.


Video:
No More Water: What If The American Southwest Runs Dry?

Apr 6, 2022 The megadrought continues to be in full swing for the western half of the United States and no where is this more acutely felt than the naturally dry American Southwest. Home to over 60 million people (including California) there are very real concerns over the longevity of the region's water resources. So what happens if there simply is no more water to pull from the rivers and ground?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwTq0EuqKCM
 
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Aaron747
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 10:11 pm

DIRECTFLT wrote:
frmrCapCadet wrote:
We also were told that those extravagant looking Casino water displays used a surprisingly low amounts of water.

The Bellagio fountains recycle brackish water from wells located on their property.

luckyone wrote:
It may be a while, but eventually LAS and PHX will outgrow their ability to finagle water sourcing. And there will be millions of people in serious trouble.

Particularly with respect to Florida and Arizona, this obsession with large scale development solely based on cheap costs TODAY is going to be seriously problematic. Heck, maybe my move to the Great Lakes will prove brilliant in 30 years time.


Video:
No More Water: What If The American Southwest Runs Dry?

Apr 6, 2022 The megadrought continues to be in full swing for the western half of the United States and no where is this more acutely felt than the naturally dry American Southwest. Home to over 60 million people (including California) there are very real concerns over the longevity of the region's water resources. So what happens if there simply is no more water to pull from the rivers and ground?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwTq0EuqKCM


It's certainly an important question. CA's coastal protection laws basically make large-scale desal impractical.
 
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casinterest
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 10:17 pm

Aaron747 wrote:
DIRECTFLT wrote:
frmrCapCadet wrote:
We also were told that those extravagant looking Casino water displays used a surprisingly low amounts of water.

The Bellagio fountains recycle brackish water from wells located on their property.

luckyone wrote:
It may be a while, but eventually LAS and PHX will outgrow their ability to finagle water sourcing. And there will be millions of people in serious trouble.

Particularly with respect to Florida and Arizona, this obsession with large scale development solely based on cheap costs TODAY is going to be seriously problematic. Heck, maybe my move to the Great Lakes will prove brilliant in 30 years time.


Video:
No More Water: What If The American Southwest Runs Dry?

Apr 6, 2022 The megadrought continues to be in full swing for the western half of the United States and no where is this more acutely felt than the naturally dry American Southwest. Home to over 60 million people (including California) there are very real concerns over the longevity of the region's water resources. So what happens if there simply is no more water to pull from the rivers and ground?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwTq0EuqKCM


It's certainly an important question. CA's coastal protection laws basically make large-scale desal impractical.


I think at the end of the day, they need to
1. run a larger diffuser into the ocean with the byproducts from the plants, and wait for the rainy season to diffuse it out
2. Maybe make some holding ponds as coolers and then just harvest the solid sedimentation for chemical plants.

Either way, desalinization is needed .
 
StarAC17
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Fri May 13, 2022 11:58 pm

bpatus297 wrote:
frmrCapCadet wrote:
Perhaps another title can better fit the post and link. It was, I think The New Yorker which had an article on this about a year ago. It is becoming obvious that there may be enough water for one of the two lakes. Precipitation is not expected to improve according to current climate science. All of the major players in this are aware that there is no water to fill treaty allocations. So in a very real sense there is no war. As ever there are those, who in the face of all the facts, are believers that there really is enough water. Sad.


I have spent a large portion of my life in the Southwest. I am amazed at the amount of water used for landscape. Why in the world do people in Phoenix need grass in their front lawn? Heck, use artificial turf for the back yard, no need to cut it. You could remove a good chunk of the stress for water if people who live in the desert landscaped like they live in the desert. Tucson, Arizona and the folks who live there have actually made pretty decent strides with this concept, they are not perfect, but they are trying.


The idea of Golf in the Southwest is ridiculous and while there are much larger factors of where the water goes (primarily agriculture) I have seen some of the most extravagant wasting of water in LA when the sprinklers were on a golf course at 2pm when the temperature was in the high 90's. I am sure the same happens in Arizona and Nevada with courses there.

Where I live in the Toronto area where we have more than enough water you will never see a golf course run its sprinklers in the middle of the day. Especially not in the height of summer when we actually have a dry year.
 
LCDFlight
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 12:15 am

I looked up the water use purposes of the Colorado River not long ago. The result? 85% agriculture. As in, irrigating the desert to grow food on non-farmland.

That is nearly the entire source of any water shortage in the US. Weather and climate are a secondary cause. Unregulated water use by farms is the main cause.
 
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Aaron747
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 12:22 am

StarAC17 wrote:
I have seen some of the most extravagant wasting of water in LA when the sprinklers were on a golf course at 2pm when the temperature was in the high 90's.


Yeah wow, that's just facilities management that knows absolutely zero about water, much less conservation or saving the owners a buck.
 
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Aesma
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 12:49 pm

Efforts to solve this issue will be costly regardless of what is done, is there hope in bringing water from Washington state ?

I see there is a wikipedia article about it, and a study : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proposed_ ... California

Apparently the idea is an ocean pipeline from the Columbia river mouth to Southern California. They estimate it would be a 40 years project, but I'm guessing it can be done much quicker if it gets prioritized.
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 1:41 pm

Short answer is obviously, "No". At this time it is not even worthy of a discussion.
 
jetwet1
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 1:42 pm

The problem with that is, once the water flows unused out of the LA area its gone. Better to pipe it across land (mostly federal once you hit Nevada) and let it flow into Powell or Mead.

From what I vaguely remember, 1 days fliw of the Columbia breaks the draught.

Feeding the water into Powell and Mead allows it to be stored for future use, but before that, California and to a degree Arizona need to take a hard look at their use age.
 
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Aesma
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 2:15 pm

The problem I see with these lakes is that a lot of the water evaporates.
 
StarAC17
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Re: Warer Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 3:03 pm

Aaron747 wrote:
StarAC17 wrote:
I have seen some of the most extravagant wasting of water in LA when the sprinklers were on a golf course at 2pm when the temperature was in the high 90's.


Yeah wow, that's just facilities management that knows absolutely zero about water, much less conservation or saving the owners a buck.


It was IIRC the Brentwood country club. It is one of the richest neighborhoods in the United States.

Aesma wrote:
The problem I see with these lakes is that a lot of the water evaporates.


Water evaporates from all lakes, just where most lakes are it rains. It doesn't rain in the Southwest.
 
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Aesma
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 3:49 pm

Yeah thus not many clouds so more evaporation.
 
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Paars
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 4:25 pm

There's a book 'Cadillac Desert', by Marc Reisner, about the western United States and its disappearing water. How individuals, politics and competing parts of the government tried to manage water.
 
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DIRECTFLT
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 6:26 pm

Lake Mead is a reservoir formed by the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River in the Southwestern United States. It is located in the states of Nevada and Arizona, 24 mi (39 km) east of Las Vegas. It is the largest reservoir in the US in terms of water capacity. Lake Mead provides water to the states of Arizona, California, and Nevada as well as some of Mexico, providing sustenance to nearly 20 million people and large areas of farmland. The lake has remained below full capacity since 1983 due to drought and increased water demand. As of 16 March 2022, Lake Mead held 31.01% of full capacity at 8.753 million acre-feet (10,797,000 megaliters), dropping below the reservoir's previous all-time low of 9.328 million acre-feet (11,506,000 megaliters) recorded in July 2016. In a draft 2022 Colorado River annual operating plan, released by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, a "Shortage Condition" is expected to be declared for 2022, due to the lake level falling below 1,075 feet (327.7 m), which will result in a projected 4.44% curtailment in downstream water delivery.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oyDOCFdiG8
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 6:31 pm

If you have access to the Washington Post it has a longer article today with some outstanding photography of the Colorado River and surrounding territory. It does not really have a lot of new 'wonky' information if you have been keeping up with this. But the pictures and interviews with people along the river are good.
 
tmu101
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 6:47 pm

Too much rain/water/flooding in the east too dry in the west. There has to be a way to efficiently and cheaply pipe water from east to west. If oil can be piped from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico surely water can be piped across the US.
 
luckyone
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 6:50 pm

jetwet1 wrote:

From what I vaguely remember, 1 days fliw of the Columbia breaks the draught.

Feeding the water into Powell and Mead allows it to be stored for future use, but before that, California and to a degree Arizona need to take a hard look at their use age.

That sounds like a logical solution, assuming here aren’t already people in the Columbia basin who depend on it. I find it absurd that anybody is discussing addressing a problem brought about by large scale development dependent on diverting water long distances, by just making the problem bigger and finding other sources of water to divert. Perhaps a more rational solution is to build near the water…like humans have done for millennia. Or at the very least, not build fairly lands in the desert.
 
johns624
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 6:58 pm

tmu101 wrote:
Too much rain/water/flooding in the east too dry in the west. There has to be a way to efficiently and cheaply pipe water from east to west. If oil can be piped from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico surely water can be piped across the US.
Water is needed in huge quantities compared to oil or natural gas. There's a reason that so many people live around the Great Lakes. We have common sense!
 
MaverickM11
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 8:03 pm

luckyone wrote:
jetwet1 wrote:

From what I vaguely remember, 1 days fliw of the Columbia breaks the draught.

Feeding the water into Powell and Mead allows it to be stored for future use, but before that, California and to a degree Arizona need to take a hard look at their use age.

That sounds like a logical solution, assuming here aren’t already people in the Columbia basin who depend on it. I find it absurd that anybody is discussing addressing a problem brought about by large scale development dependent on diverting water long distances, by just making the problem bigger and finding other sources of water to divert. Perhaps a more rational solution is to build near the water…like humans have done for millennia. Or at the very least, not build fairly lands in the desert.

Or charge market rates for the water?
 
luckyone
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sat May 14, 2022 8:15 pm

MaverickM11 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
jetwet1 wrote:

From what I vaguely remember, 1 days fliw of the Columbia breaks the draught.

Feeding the water into Powell and Mead allows it to be stored for future use, but before that, California and to a degree Arizona need to take a hard look at their use age.

That sounds like a logical solution, assuming here aren’t already people in the Columbia basin who depend on it. I find it absurd that anybody is discussing addressing a problem brought about by large scale development dependent on diverting water long distances, by just making the problem bigger and finding other sources of water to divert. Perhaps a more rational solution is to build near the water…like humans have done for millennia. Or at the very least, not build fairly lands in the desert.

Or charge market rates for the water?

Agreed. Which would likely discourage building settlements of millions of people in a desert.
 
jetwet1
Posts: 3554
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 2:03 pm

luckyone wrote:
jetwet1 wrote:

From what I vaguely remember, 1 days fliw of the Columbia breaks the draught.

Feeding the water into Powell and Mead allows it to be stored for future use, but before that, California and to a degree Arizona need to take a hard look at their use age.

That sounds like a logical solution, assuming here aren’t already people in the Columbia basin who depend on it. I find it absurd that anybody is discussing addressing a problem brought about by large scale development dependent on diverting water long distances, by just making the problem bigger and finding other sources of water to divert. Perhaps a more rational solution is to build near the water…like humans have done for millennia. Or at the very least, not build fairly lands in the desert.


One important thing to remember, cities like Las Vegas and Phoenix are using less water now then they were 30 years ago, despite adding a couple of million residents each.

Every now and again someone makes a lot of noise about piping water from the Mississippi to the Colorado. The amount required wouldn't make the slightest difference to the Mississippi. A former employee of mine was into this, but his plan was a little different, he wanted to have the main draw from the Mississippi above St Louis and build the system big enough where if need be the system could draw (and due to its length) store enough water to stop the Mississippi from flooding St Louis and the surrounding areas causing billions in damage.

A lot of the system was simple cut and cover, it was large, but not stupidly expensive.
 
NIKV69
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 2:20 pm

DIRECTFLT wrote:
Lake Mead is a reservoir formed by the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River in the Southwestern United States. It is located in the states of Nevada and Arizona, 24 mi (39 km) east of Las Vegas. It is the largest reservoir in the US in terms of water capacity. Lake Mead provides water to the states of Arizona, California, and Nevada as well as some of Mexico, providing sustenance to nearly 20 million people and large areas of farmland. The lake has remained below full capacity since 1983 due to drought and increased water demand. As of 16 March 2022, Lake Mead held 31.01% of full capacity at 8.753 million acre-feet (10,797,000 megaliters), dropping below the reservoir's previous all-time low of 9.328 million acre-feet (11,506,000 megaliters) recorded in July 2016. In a draft 2022 Colorado River annual operating plan, released by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, a "Shortage Condition" is expected to be declared for 2022, due to the lake level falling below 1,075 feet (327.7 m), which will result in a projected 4.44% curtailment in downstream water delivery.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oyDOCFdiG8


I live in this area and get my water from this. Ugh
 
johns624
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 2:41 pm

Another thing to consider is power supply. Will the low lake levels at Lake Mead and Glen Canyon affect hydro power production? With all the older retirees in the Southwest, a power outage or even brownout in a July heatwave could have catastrophic effects.
 
luckyone
Posts: 4452
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 1:50 pm

Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 3:24 pm

jetwet1 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
jetwet1 wrote:

From what I vaguely remember, 1 days fliw of the Columbia breaks the draught.

Feeding the water into Powell and Mead allows it to be stored for future use, but before that, California and to a degree Arizona need to take a hard look at their use age.

That sounds like a logical solution, assuming here aren’t already people in the Columbia basin who depend on it. I find it absurd that anybody is discussing addressing a problem brought about by large scale development dependent on diverting water long distances, by just making the problem bigger and finding other sources of water to divert. Perhaps a more rational solution is to build near the water…like humans have done for millennia. Or at the very least, not build fairly lands in the desert.


One important thing to remember, cities like Las Vegas and Phoenix are using less water now then they were 30 years ago, despite adding a couple of million residents each.

Every now and again someone makes a lot of noise about piping water from the Mississippi to the Colorado. The amount required wouldn't make the slightest difference to the Mississippi. A former employee of mine was into this, but his plan was a little different, he wanted to have the main draw from the Mississippi above St Louis and build the system big enough where if need be the system could draw (and due to its length) store enough water to stop the Mississippi from flooding St Louis and the surrounding areas causing billions in damage.

A lot of the system was simple cut and cover, it was large, but not stupidly expensive.

Yeah I’ve heard that argument before. But it basically amounts to depleting scarce water at a slower rate than before. It’s still depleting water faster than it would naturally replenish itself.
 
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ER757
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 5:15 pm

luckyone wrote:
MaverickM11 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
That sounds like a logical solution, assuming here aren’t already people in the Columbia basin who depend on it. I find it absurd that anybody is discussing addressing a problem brought about by large scale development dependent on diverting water long distances, by just making the problem bigger and finding other sources of water to divert. Perhaps a more rational solution is to build near the water…like humans have done for millennia. Or at the very least, not build fairly lands in the desert.

Or charge market rates for the water?

Agreed. Which would likely discourage building settlements of millions of people in a desert.

This is a nice theory, but there's only so much room for people to live in "watery" areas. To expand settlements in areas with more water, you' have to develop ever further from existing urban areas and into farmland. So then, where does food production go?
 
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readytotaxi
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 6:01 pm

tmu101 wrote:
Too much rain/water/flooding in the east too dry in the west. There has to be a way to efficiently and cheaply pipe water from east to west. If oil can be piped from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico surely water can be piped across the US.

It all comes down to money, if the west wants it, pay for the pipeline. Certainly safer to pump water than oil and with warming and droughts increasing this should have started 5yrs ago but no one wants to pick up the tab. A pipeline from the Great Lakes to the westcoast with a stop off in Las Vegas would be great, Vegas has the money. Or how about a huge desalination plant or two along the west coast? The problem is not going to go away.
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 6:28 pm

Farmers cannot afford real market rates for the cost of even existing irrigation. Unless those new sources are highly subsidized (mostly by people living in metro areas) there are no new large supplies of water available for farming in desert areas. The US needs to begin some farming industrial policy on maintaining a lot of our agriculture production. IIRC most wheat, corn, and soybeans are not irrigated. A lot of our fruit and veggies are irrigated, as is a lot of cotton.
 
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ER757
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 7:53 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
Farmers cannot afford real market rates for the cost of even existing irrigation. Unless those new sources are highly subsidized (mostly by people living in metro areas) there are no new large supplies of water available for farming in desert areas. The US needs to begin some farming industrial policy on maintaining a lot of our agriculture production. IIRC most wheat, corn, and soybeans are not irrigated. A lot of our fruit and veggies are irrigated, as is a lot of cotton.

A lot of rice is grown in the Sacramento Valley in California - places like Williams and Willows. That's a pretty water-intensive crop to be growing in such a dry climate. To your point about fruits and veggies needing to be irrigated, it's sort of a catch 22 with those types of crops growing in the Central Valley. Yes, they require lots of irrigation, but the year-round temperatures there allow multiple cycles of said crops to be harvested annually. That can't happen in more temperate areas further north or east. So the end result of not planting in the west is either much higher produce costs due to importing fresh from other countries or food shortages. No easy answer really
 
luckyone
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 11:12 pm

ER757 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
MaverickM11 wrote:
Or charge market rates for the water?

Agreed. Which would likely discourage building settlements of millions of people in a desert.

This is a nice theory, but there's only so much room for people to live in "watery" areas. To expand settlements in areas with more water, you' have to develop ever further from existing urban areas and into farmland. So then, where does food production go?

The number of depopulated industrial areas in the US belies such a statement. And that’s before one considers increasing density, which in general
is quite low in the US, even in developed areas.
 
Pi7472000
Posts: 413
Joined: Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 11:16 pm

Sad and scary to see the uncontrolled development in the Southwest. We will need to restrict development in human caused climate change areas. We will see millions of climate refugees from the Southwest by 2100. It seems the Great Lakes region will be the best region to be in by the end of the century. We need to move off fossil fuels and limit car ownership which is changing the climate and weather patterns. We also need to promote a one child family.
 
johns624
Posts: 5523
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Sun May 15, 2022 11:49 pm

Pi7472000 wrote:
We will see millions of climate refugees from the Southwest by 2100. It seems the Great Lakes region will be the best region to be in by the end of the century.
But, but...winter, and seasons...
 
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einsteinboricua
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Mon May 16, 2022 12:29 am

Given that CA just announced a massive budget surplus, one of the big items for Sacramento is investing in water desalination plants along the coast (namely in the SoCal region). If there's excess production, it can sell some to AZ and NV so that those states also benefit. If both states want a constant supply, have them chip in to the effort.
 
Kent350787
Posts: 2465
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Re: Water Wars & Mega Droughts in the US Southwest

Mon May 16, 2022 12:46 am

einsteinboricua wrote:
Given that CA just announced a massive budget surplus, one of the big items for Sacramento is investing in water desalination plants along the coast (namely in the SoCal region). If there's excess production, it can sell some to AZ and NV so that those states also benefit. If both states want a constant supply, have them chip in to the effort.


I recall watching a documentary on the issues of water extraction from the Colorado and the problems it caused. It was in junior high school geography here in Australia and IIRC we were discussing balancing environmental needs.

The doco on the catastrophic issues facing agriculture in the SW was "Where did the Colorado go?" released in 1976. Clearly changing climate is just making things even worse.

Desal is a good if high cost option for drinking water. My city of Sydney has a desal plant to supplement dams, and IIRC the cost of the water out of the desal plant is around twice that of other sources. It really isn't a workable option for broadscale agriculture.

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