Colorado River in Crisis, Its Future is at Stake
The water supply system in the Colorado River Basin is stressed to its limits. More than a year ago, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation determined that the river cannot continue to support growing demands without robust investment in a smarter water infrastructure that promotes conservation, efficiency, and reuse. The Bureau also announced it will have to release less water to the river’s lower basin. The State of California, in order to manage unprecedented drought, will likely need to draw 300,000 acre feet of water from the Lake Mead Reservoir. This could have a serious effect on the 36 million people who rely on the river for drinking water, and it puts at risk 15% of our nation’s agriculture and a $26 billion recreation economy that relies on the river.
While we cannot prevent droughts from happening in the future, we can make our communities better prepared through investment in solutions such as groundwater recharge, water recycling, stormwater reuse, forest and meadow restoration, and agricultural easements to preserve seasonal crops that can be fallowed during droughts.
It is time to act and to get serious about long-term solutions for the Colorado River basin. It’s time to change the way we manage water in the Colorado River. Tell the President to support federal programs that can assist cities and farms in getting smarter about managing their water supplies.
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