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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]

July 05, 2017 — California bill takes aim at Mojave Desert groundwater project with ties to Trump nominee — A new bill in the state Legislature would require California to review the environmental impacts of a company's proposal to pump groundwater from beneath the Mojave Desert and sell it to Southern California cities — a controversial plan that was slowed down by President Obama, but which appears to have the backing of the Trump administration — Desertsun.com

July 05, 2017 — Water experts: Climate change intensifying effects of persistent drought — The effects of global climate change are being felt in the West’s continuing drought, according to a panel discussion at UNLV last week. Wildfires have increased over the last several years, something one of Colby Pellegrino’s mentors told her years ago would show that climate change is legitimate — Las Vegas Sun

Jun 26, 2017 — Opponents continue the fight against the water pipeline — with some unlikely allies at their side — Standing on a hill overlooking Meadow Valley, near Pioche, a couple of people in a group from Las Vegas ask incredulously, “Is it natural?” Having left behind bone-dry desert when they turned off highway 93, they’re surprised by the lush vegetation blanketing the valley floor, food for the domesticated cows and wild deer that lounge on land settled by Farrel Lytle’s ancestors. Yes, the octogenarian Lytle affirms, with a quiet smile, his family and other ranchers have subsisted on the water that nourishes these pastures for 150 years — knpr.org

June 23, 2017 — Keeping an eye on Lake Mead — LAKE MEAD: Arizona risks losing water rights because of a lingering, nearly two-decade long drought in the Colorado River that could restrict water use ranging from farmers’ crops to how many households receive water, state water experts say. Calcium rings around Lake Mead tell the story of declining water levels, with cream markings permanently decorating the canyon walls that shows high levels that haven’t been seen since 1983. Current surface elevation is at 1,081 feet. If it drops another six feet, water to Arizona will likely be cut, according to an Arizona budget document — mohavedailynews.com

Alexis Kuhbander/Cronkite News June 20, 2017 — Parched by drought, Lake Mead water levels continue to fall — LAKE MEAD: Arizona risks losing water rights because of a lingering, nearly two-decade long drought in the Colorado River that could restrict water use ranging from farmers’ crops to how many households receive water, state water experts say. Calcium rings around Lake Mead tell the story of declining water levels, with cream markings permanently decorating the canyon walls that shows high levels that haven’t been seen since 1983. Current surface elevation is at 1,081 feet. If it drops another six feet, water to Arizona will likely be cut, according to an Arizona budget document

A protest sign in Baker, Nev., opposes the Southern Nevada Water Authority’s proposed 300-mile pipeline from Las Vegas to the Great Basin area, where groundwater would be transported to the state’s population center. June 19, 2017 — Water fights: Can the free market tame the West’s vital and volatile currency? — There was no electricity when Vickie Buchanan’s family came to Diamond Valley in 1958. Nor were there many crops. But there was water, and as early settlers, Vickie’s parents were given priority access under a rule fundamental to Western water law: “first in time, first in right.” A steady flow of farmers followed, planting alfalfa and timothy hay grass in the high-desert soil of the central Nevada valley. As fields started producing, demand for water skyrocketed, and the state awarded more and more water rights. These rights became the farmers’ property, and they could be passed down in perpetuity — Las Vegas Sun [Print PDF]

June 19, 2017 — WESTERN WATER: Dams: 'Relics' or vital to an 'all of the above' fix? — As the West struggles with climate change, drought and rapid population growth, talk about the region's deepening water woes often boils down to a simple but complicated question. Build more dams and other infrastructure, or ramp up conservation? E&E News put that question to two leading players with strong competing views — E & E News

June 16, 2017 — Latest forecast shifts Lake Mead from big gain to small loss — Several hundred billion gallons of water vanished from federal forecasts for Lake Mead over the past two months, but Bureau of Reclamation officials insist there’s no reason to panic. In April, the bureau was predicting that the man-made lake east of Las Vegas would finish 2018 about 21 feet higher than it is today. Now the bureau is forecasting a 4-foot drop in the surface of the reservoir over the next 18 months — a difference of 25 feet — Las Vegas Review Journal

Lake Powell on April 12, 2017. The white ‘bathtub ring’ at the cliff base indicates how much higher the lake reached at its peak, nearly 100 feet above the current level. June 15, 2017 — The Colorado River is shrinking because of climate change — The nation’s two largest reservoirs, Lake Mead on the Arizona/Nevada border and Lake Powell on the Arizona/Utah border, were brim full in the year 2000. Four short years later, they had lost enough water to supply California its legally apportioned share of Colorado River water for more than five years. Now, 17 years later, they still have not recovered. This ongoing, unprecedented event threatens water supplies to Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Tucson, Denver, Salt Lake City, Albuquerque and some of the most productive agricultural lands anywhere in the world. It is critical to understand what is causing it so water managers can make realistic water use and conservation plans — hcn.org

June 14, 2017 — Phoenix officials fight drought, Havasu benefits — A plan by the City of Phoenix to significantly reduce its reliance on water from the Colorado River could mean a breather for a region constantly threatened by drought. The Colorado River provides more than 40 million people with water, and Lake Havasu City serves as the reservoir for the Phoenix and Los Angeles metropolitan areas — www.havasunews.com

 (Photo by Alexis Kuhbander/Cronkite News) June 14, 2017 — Parched by drought, Lake Mead water levels could lead to statewide water limits — LAKE MEAD – Arizona risks losing water rights because of a lingering, nearly two-decade long drought in the Colorado River that could restrict water use ranging from farmers’ crops to how many households receive water, state water experts say. Calcium rings around Lake Mead tell the story of declining water levels, with cream markings permanently decorating the canyon walls that shows high levels that haven’t been seen since 1983. Current surface elevation is at 1,081 feet. If it drops another six feet, water to Arizona will likely be cut, according to an Arizona budget document — cronkitenews.azpbs.org

June 14, 2017 — Utah Congressional Delegation Asks Trump to Fast-Track Colorado River Destruction — Colorado River, USA: Today, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) received a letter from the Utah Congressional delegation and led by Republican U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch, asking President Trump to ‘Expedite’ the permitting of the Lake Powell Pipeline (Pipeline). The letter is posted here. The Pipeline proposes to divert 86,000 acre feet of water (28 billion gallons) out of the Colorado River at Lake Powell every year to fuel and subsidize population growth in Southwest Utah. The letter states that Trump should expedite the Pipeline as a part of his “infrastructure” executive order and make the Pipeline a “high priority”. FERC is the permitting agency for the Pipeline — savethecolorado.org

June 06,2017 — Advocates celebrate protection of Nevada water law as Legislature adjourns — The Nevada Legislature adjourned last night without enacting a controversial measure to redefine key provisions of the state's water law. Assembly Bill 298 was a proposal by the Southern Nevada Water Authority to lay out the definitions of certain terms and a detailed monitoring, management and mitigation (or 3M) process in statute. Despite attempts to work on the language, the bill died in the face of extensive opposition from environmentalists, sportsmen, ranchers, farmers, rural residents and governments, tribes, and businesses. This broad group of stakeholders feared the language was too permissive and would lead to more of the state's groundwater basins becoming over-allocated — Nevada Appeal

June 02, 2017 —U.S. issues permit for large dam on Colorado River headwaters — The United States Army Corps of Engineers has given a water agency in Colorado's Front Range the green light to build a large dam and reservoir to divert and store water from the Colorado River – the first such project that has been permitted in decades UPI.com

All 2017 News Stories

All 2016 News Stories


   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


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