In our first live broadcast yesterday we discussed the ongoing crisis surround water levels in the Colorado Basin and in Lake Mead specifically. If you would like to watch the broadcast you can find it below and our members have access to listen to just the audio.

On June 14, 2022 an emergency request from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Camille Touton was sent to all seven states who comprise the Colorado River Basin that they need to come up with an emergency water reduction plan in order to attempt to stabilization the region.

According to recent data, Lake Mead and Lake Powell, two of the most important reservoirs in the Colorado Basin system are sitting at 24% and 27% of their total capacity respectively. The seven states that comprise the Colorado Basin are Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, Arizona, California, Nevada and parts of Northern Mexico.

None of the choices are good, and the situation could potentially be catastrophic as 40 million people depend on the Colorado river for both water and electricity. Should Lake Mead continue to drop, there will be issue with electricity generation as the bigger turbines won't work without water flow. As of today, August 2, 2022, water level is at 1,040 feet. Although the lake isn't projected to drop to "dead pool" levels of 895 feet for "a few years" (whatever that is supposed to mean while global warming continues to exponentially worsen), if it does drop to dead pool, no more power can be generated.

Associations in these seven affected states need to pay attention to this issue. Agriculture is bound to be affected by severe water cuts, and lack of water and electricity can impact not only your own association's operations, but the operations of your members.

I encourage you to begin to establish task forces to take a systematic look at the follow-on consequences of severe water restrictions and potential electrical cutbacks particularly in the cities of Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Las Vegas and other affected communities.

Risk management in the 21st century is no longer an academic exercise. Increasingly, it is a call to action that none of us can afford to ignore.

Links to articles with more information:

Lake Mead Keeps Dropping - https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/150111/lake-mead-keeps-dropping

60 days and counting: Colorado River cutbacks achievable, experts say, as long as farm interests are on board - https://www.watereducationcolorado.org/fresh-water-news/60-days-and-counting-colorado-river-cutbacks-achievable-experts-say-as-long-as-farm-interests-are-on-board/

What will happen to the Colorado River? What we know about looming water cuts: https://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/joannaallhands/2022/06/30/what-know-colorado-river-water-cuts/7759981001/