Today, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation released its new projection for the Colorado River watershed. Long story short: Our already brutal Colorado River water forecast just got more gruesome. According to Reclamation, “At Lake Mead, today’s projections indicate the chance of Lake Mead declining to elevation 1,025 feet [which is the Tier Three Shortage trigger] is as high as 66% in 2025, and that there is a 22% chance of the reservoir elevation dropping to 1,000 feet the same year.” In addition, Lake Powell now faces a 25%-35% of hitting the “deadpool” level where the Glen Canyon Dam can no longer generate electric power within the next five years.
We’ve known for some time that this is a serious problem that’s perilously close to becoming an even more serious crisis. And yet, what are we doing to find and implement serious solutions? That’s what we’ll need to discuss further next week.