#LakeMead’s steady decline hits low water mark — The Las Vegas Review-Journal #ColoradoRiver #COriver #aridification

SNWA intake #1 exposed April 2022. Photo credit: SNWA

Click the link to read the article on the Las Vegas Review-Journal website (Colton Lochhead). Here’s an excerpt:

Lake Mead now sits just 29 percent full, dropping below 30 percent for the first time since the reservoir was initially filled more than 80 years ago, according to the most recent weekly report released this week by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

“We have been planning for this and preparing for this potential for more than two decades,” said Bronson Mack, spokesman for the Southern Nevada Water Authority. “We anticipate that Lake Mead’s water level is going to continue to decline as a result of drought and climate change conditions. But this further emphasizes the seriousness of this issue. And it does serve as a very stark reminder that we all need to conserve the water that we use outdoors.”

Lake Mead’s continued drop is not a surprise. Beyond the rising temperatures and dwindling water supply in the Colorado River, the Bureau of Reclamation recently implemented a plan to hold back 480,000 acre-feet of water in Lake Powell that would normally be released downstream and to Lake Mead, a measure taken to ensure that Glen Canyon Dam can continue to generate electricity amid what the Department of Interior has said are the driest conditions in the American West in more than 1,200 years.

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