Water in the west … how long will it be available and for whom…???

Water in the west … how long will it be available and for whom…???

Water Deeply’s top coverage of water issues in California and the American West.

According to polling by the Public Policy Institute of California, voters in the state are leaning in favor of Proposition 3, the $8.9 billion water bond on the November ballot. But the PPIC also asks: What are voters missing? One issue is that bonds don’t pay for operations or maintenance backlogs, which are growing. And as Water Deeply noted in May, the measure includes $750 million to repair the Friant-Kern Canal, which some consider a special interest.

In Arizona, the state Supreme Court cleared the way for a 7,000-home subdivision near Sierra Vista that would rely exclusively on groundwater. Opponents fear the massive project jeopardizes the San Pedro River, one of the last free-flowing rivers in the Southwest. And the timing is troublesome, as water leaders statewide struggle to agree on a drought contingency plan to avoid severe water shortages that may be only 18 months away.

The American West has entered an era of permanent water scarcity, a marked shift from previous periods of episodic drought. The same can now be said for fire: In California, there hasn’t been a month without wildfire since 2012. In short, the extremes have become routine. To explore these challenges further, we invite you to join Water Deeply and a panel of experts for a 30-minute conference call conversation about adapting to this new reality. The discussion will be held on Thursday, Aug. 30, at 1 p.m. PT/4 p.m. ET. Please RSVP here.


Why One Arizona County Could Upend the Southwest’s Drought Plan

New federal estimates suggest serious water shortages on the Colorado River are closer than thought. While Arizona water users try to cooperate on a conservation fix, one group of farmers stands in the way of a compromise

Drought Forces Hard Choices for Farmers and Ranchers in the Southwest

Large reservoirs have buffered urban areas in the Southwest from the worst of the year’s dry conditions, but rural farmers and ranchers are bearing the brunt of water shortages and the economic fallout.


How Ranchers Are Getting by With Less Water Across the West


Cassidy Johnston,  New Mexico Cattle Rancher and Sustainability Officer, U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance

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