Friday, March 24, 2017

Winter's bounty

Big snowstorms put Colorado River drought plan on ice

The water level behind Hoover Dam was low in 2015, with a “bathtub ring” showing previous water levels clearly visible. Runoff from heavy snows is expected to refill the reservoir. IRFAN KHAN

Los Angeles Times

Arizona Daily Star

An unusually snowy winter in the Rockies has for now helped put the kibosh on a statewide plan in Arizona to conserve Colorado River water to stop Lake Mead from falling too low. Future conservation efforts are highly uncertain. Central Arizona Project officials say the earlier proposal is “no longer viable” and that it’s time for a new approach. So instead of a fixed, three-year conservation plan, CAP officials say that the best solution now is to plan annually.

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Judge: Water quality in hands of Iowa legislature

Des Moines Register

A federal judge has dismissed Des Moines Water Works' lawsuit against drainage districts in three northern Iowa counties the utility claimed are funneling high levels of nitrates into the Raccoon River, a source of drinking water. Federal Judge Leonard Strand determined that Iowa's water quality problems are an issue for the Iowa legislature to resolve.

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Nevada water managers guard against flooding

Associated Press

As the first wet storm of the spring sweept into the mountains around Lake Tahoe, wary water managers were watching the sky and already releasing water from swollen reservoirs to guard against flooding across northern Nevada. After a winter that saw more than double the normal snowfall in some parts of the Sierra, officials say the threat of flooding could extend into July.

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