Sinead O’Connor, the outspoken Irish singer-songwriter best known for her powerful, evocative voice, as showcased on her biggest hit, a breathtaking rendition of Prince’s “Nothing Compares 2 U,” and for her political provocations onstage and off, has died. She was 56…Recognizable by her shaved head and by wide eyes that could appear pained or full of rage, Ms. O’Connor released 10 studio albums, beginning with the alternative hit “The Lion and the Cobra” in 1987. She went on to sell millions of albums worldwide, breaking out with “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got” in 1990. That album, featuring “Nothing Compares 2 U,” a No. 1 hit and MTV staple, won a Grammy Award in 1991 for best alternative music performance — although Ms. O’Connor boycotted the ceremony over what she called the show’s excessive commercialism…
At 15, at a wedding, she sang “Evergreen” — the love theme from “A Star Is Born,” made famous by Barbra Streisand — and was discovered by Paul Byrne, a drummer who had an affiliation with the superstar Irish band U2. She left boarding school at 16 and began her career.
Click the link to read the article on the InkStain website (John Fleck):
When last we visited, Lake Mead sat at elevation 1,054.28 feet above sea level. It’s now at 1,058.34, which is up ~13 feet from when I took the above photo last December.
I hope they moved those chairs.
The good news is the current forecast calling for the combined storage of Lake Mead and Lake Powell to end the water year up nearly 5 million acre feet from a year ago.
The bad news is that total identifiable water use reductions in this year of chaotic crisis fire drill total just 1.2 million acre feet, according to the Bureau of Reclamation’s July 14, 2023 forecast.
This is not enough.
Who’s Using What?
Kudos to Southern Nevada, which at ~202kaf is on track for its lowest take on the Colorado River since 1992. Clark County’s population has nearly tripled in that time.
At ~860kaf, the Central Arizona Project is on track to make its lowest draw on the Colorado River since 1995.
At ~803kaf, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California’s forecast draw on the river is taking 12.5 percent less than its average over the last decade, but Met is weird because of California State Water Project wet year chaos, so I’m not sure I fully understand what they’re up to. (Jump in the comments and explain, Met friends!)
The Imperial Irrigation District is forecast to take ~2.5maf from the river this year, which is basically unchanged from its use over the previous decade.
What is Needed
The analysis by Jack Schmidt et al suggests that, based on 21st century hydrology, we need to cut 1.5 million acre feet per year just to stabilize the system. If we want to actually refill a bit, to provide cushion against the sort of catastrophe that was narrowly averted this year by a big snowpack, the cuts need to be even deeper.
The above graph from their paper shows the problem. I’ve circled the last big snowpack year in red, and you can see the others as well. Every time we got bonus water, we just used it.
We need to avoid making that mistake again.
A big thanks to friends of Inkstain for helping support this work.
Click the link to go to the ResilentCORiver.org website:
WHAT IS RESILIENCE?
Resilience is the ability for the Colorado River Basin to prepare for and adapt to climate shifts and extremes, including rising temperatures, increased drying, and variability in precipitation. Resilience on the Colorado River means identifying, piloting, and implementing durable strategies to avoid or mitigate climate-related risks to the Colorado River community.