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Lake Mead water levels behind the Hoover Dam in May 2022 show the effect of long-term drought on water levels there. One plan to prop up water levels in the Colorado River basin is to pay farmers in Upper Basin states to converse water.

California and Arizona are currently fighting each other over water from the Colorado River, but this isn’t new - it’s actually been going on for over 100 years; at one point, the states literally went to war about it - and the problem comes down to some really bad math from 1922. Read more»

The ongoing, two-decade drought has reduced overall precipitation and evaporated more Rockies snowmelt before it can reach the river, which has reduced inflow into both reservoirs.

The Department of the Interior announced it would look into changing the rules for how it operates Lake Powell and Lake Mead - paving the way for the department to impose sharp cuts on major water users in Arizona, Nevada, California, and Mexico. Read more»

Cows look out from the Riverview-owned Coronado Dairy farm near Willcox, Ariz.

Over the previous decade, Minnesota-based dairy operation Riverview had gobbled up more than 50,000 acres in Cochise County to build an expansive network of farms and feedlots, and the mounting water crisis has created a groundswell of anger in the Willcox Basin. Read more»

The Central Arizona Project canal north of Tucson near Picacho Peak State Park.

Proponents of massive projects to bring water to the West argue that they could stabilize western cities for decades to come, while detractors counter the only sustainable solution is consume less water - but most of these projects are ideas from a bygone era. Read more»