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The Great Basin Water Network (GBWN) protects the water resources of the Great Basin for current and future residents. Read our 40 questions and answers about the Las Vegas Water Grab Las Vegas Water Grab Rejected by Nevada Supreme Court Press Releases, GWBN Newsletters & Other Documents

In The News — Below are press stories about the ongoing drought in the west; press stories also cover the Southern Nevada Water Authority's "water grab" in Nevada and Utah; and other "mega" water projects that threaten the Great Basin. [Note: Stories open in new browser window]

Jason King, Nevada State Engineer March 07, 2017 — State engineer wants to tweak Nevada water laws — CARSON CITY: A bill to update technical aspects in state water law received only token opposition Tuesday in a Senate committee hearing. State Engineer Jason King told members of the natural resources committee that the intent of Senate Bill 47 “is to address issues throughout the water law that we believe need clarification, correction or addition” — LRJ.com

March 06, 2017 — Getting water to, from Blue Diamond Hill development won’t be cheap — The developer of Blue Diamond Hill can expect to spend tens of millions of dollars on infrastructure to provide water and sewer service to a proposed 5,025-home community, officials say. “And that’s a conservative estimate,” said Bronson Mack, Las Vegas Valley Water District spokesman — LRJ.com

March 02, 2017 — Nevada still in drought despite full snowpack — LAS VEGAS - The 2016-2017 winter season dropped plenty of snow in the Rockies. For years, the decade and a half drought across southern Nevada and the lower Colorado River Basin has impacted water levels at Lake Mead, creating what locals have long dubbed "the bathtub ring." Nevada is still considered to be in a drought, but the accumulation in snowpacks has experts hopeful about the health of Lake Mead. However, the state's not out of the clear — Lasvegasnow.com [Related Story]

February 28, 2017 — In arid Southwest, cities expand but use less water — LAS VEGAS AND PHOENIX : Mat Baroudi used to have a backyard of grass, consuming 55 gallons of water per square foot. Now it’s stone floor with a gazebo and a fire pit in the center. Jasmine, flowering plum, and Australian bottle trees dot the yard. Two tortoises, Blaze and Dmitri, bask in what passes for early morning cool — csmonitor.com

February 27, 2017 — Sinking Land Crushes California Groundwater Storage Capacity — Unbridled pumping of aquifers in California’s San Joaquin Valley is severely reducing the land’s capacity to hold water, according to a Stanford University study. The loss of storage is due to subsidence, which is the compaction of soils as a result of removing too much water. The study, which provides the first estimate of the permanent loss of groundwater storage space that occurred during a drought from 2007 to 2010, also shows that California lost natural water storage capacity equal to a medium-sized reservoir. The losses occurred just as the state prepares to spend billions of dollars to build reservoirs to retain water, either above ground or below — circleofblue.org

February 24, 2017 — Hot weather linked to climate change is reducing Colorado River flows, study says — Hot weather related to long-term climate change has been a prime cause of this century's chronic shortfalls in Colorado River flows, a new study says. This is the first study to formally link climate change to the river's declining flows, said the researchers, Jonathan Overpeck of the University of Arizona and Bradley Udall of Colorado State University — By Tony Davis The Arizona Daily Star, Tucson

February 23, 2017 — West's challenge is still water scarcity, wet winter or not — With climate change affecting water supplies already strained by urban growth, states in the Colorado River basin are being forced to innovate and adapt — csmonitor.com

February 18, 2017 — Wet winter has improved Colorado River basin's water forecast, but the drought endures — California is not the only place in the West confronting startling amounts of rain and snow. Drought conditions have declined substantially across the region in recent weeks, with heavy storms replenishing reservoirs and piling fresh powder on ski resorts. Yet there is one place where the precipitation has been particularly welcome and could be transformative: the Colorado River basin, which provides water to nearly 40 million people across seven states — LA Times

February 17, 2017 — Deep Rockies snowpack likely to forestall Colorado River water shortage — With snow piling up in the mountains that feed the Colorado River, the short-term outlook for Lake Mead has suddenly improved. But new research warns of more trouble ahead — Las Vegas Review Journal

February 15, 2017 — Dam precious resource: Despite drought, precautions in place reduce threat to lake levels — Though the worst drought on record has been plaguing the Colorado River since 2000, the water situation for Boulder City residents may not be as dire as some people believe, according to multiple sources. Daniel Bunk, river operations group manager for the Bureau of Reclamation, Lower Colorado Region, said Lake Powell provides a buffer that has helped curb the amount of water lost each year at Lake Mead, which currently sits at about 1,087 feet, a low it hasn’t seen since 1956, well before the drought began — BoldercityReview.com

February 14, 2017 — Water looming as key issue for Nevada Legislature — CARSON CITY: State lawmakers got a crash course Tuesday on Nevada’s complicated water laws as they prepare to consider several bills dealing with the most precious resource in the driest state in the nation. State Engineer Jason King, whose office has proposed four bills this session, said more proposed laws are expected, including one to address Nevada’s long-standing doctrine of “use-it-or-lose it” — Las Vegas Review Journal

February 14, 2017 — Why keep the Salton Sea? — In 1905, an engineer gave California a lake. He didn’t do it on purpose; the cuts he made in a canal a few miles into Mexico burst open, releasing the full force of a flooding Colorado River into the Imperial Valley. For two years it filled a pit known as the Salton Sink, in southeastern California, until the government managed to close the breach — hcn.org [Print PDF]

February 14, 2017 — The West’s coal giant is going down — The smokestacks of the Navajo Generation Station rise 775 feet from the sere landscape of the Navajo Nation in northern Arizona, just three miles away from the serpentine, stagnant blue wound in sandstone known as Lake Powell — hcn.org [Print PDF]

February 10, 2017 — NASA Improves Snowmelt Forecast In Colorado River Basin — NASA is keeping track of dust that settles on snow in the Rocky Mountains. The research will help hydrologists improve their predictions for how fast the Colorado River will rise this spring — kjzz.org

February 09, 2017 — San Joaquin Valley continues to sink because of groundwater pumping, NASA says — California’s San Joaquin Valley continues to sink at an alarming rate because of groundwater pumping and irrigation, according to a new study by NASA. Ground levels in some areas have dropped 1 to 2 feet in the last two years, creating deeper and wider “bowls” that continue to threaten the vital network of channels that transport water across Southern California, researchers say — LA Times

February 2017 Vanishing Act: NASA Scientist Jay Famiglietti on Our Changing Water Future [Time 27.55] — A conversation with Jay Famiglietti, senior water scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. One of the space agency’s most intriguing ventures is what it learns by turning its view back at Earth. A perspective that—as it turns out—can tell us a lot about our changing planet — NASA

February 06, 2017 — Desalination of aquifers offers drought-weary California new hope — California’s historic drought may be winding down. But water officials across the Golden State are increasingly exploring a hidden but promising way to add to the state’s water supply: removing salt from the billions of gallons of brackish — or distastefully salty — water that lies deep below the Earth’s surface — Mercurynews.com

Tahoe, 2017 -- Photo: (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Grou February 02,2017 — Sierra Nevada snowpack is biggest in 22 years — and more snow is on the way — After a month of huge blizzards and “atmospheric river” storms, the Sierra Nevada snowpack — source of a third of California’s drinking water — is 177 percent of the historic average, the biggest in more than two decades — Mercurynews.com

A view from the Lake Mead side of the Hoover Damn. (PHOTO: Via Pixabay)February 01, 2017 — Shrinking Lake Mead Water Levels Could Trigger Official Shortage — Water levels in Lake Mead, which stores water for Arizona, California and Nevada, have plunged in recent years. If levels drop below a certain point, they trigger an official shortage. The three states are trying to avoid that. Federal water managers say there is a 50-50 chance water levels in Lake Mead will fall below 1,075 feet above sea level, or about 35 percent capacity for the reservoir. That’s the point at which federal rules will kick in mandating radical cuts in water taken from the lake —azpm.org

All 2017 News Stories

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   GBWN Video Files Baker Family Ranches Video The Consequences...Transporting Snake Valley Water to Satisfy a Thirsty Las Vegas: An Eastern Nevada Rancher's Story is a virtual water tour of Snake Valley. Baker Family Ranches has produced the DVD to help people understand that there is not enough water in Snake Valley to justify the Southern

  • 2017 Calendars now available — enjoy a stunning scene from Snake Valley
    As more and more people populate the Great Basin, more and more water providers and developers consider tapping ground water to supply new cities and developments. This intense pressure from population growth has created a climate for natural resource exploitation, which threatens a balance between human and natural uses of the Great Basin's limited water resources. Your purchase of this calendar will help support the efforts to preserve and protect the natural resources, wildlife, and economy of the Snake Valley.
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