The Colorado River is evaporating, and climate change is largely to blame

The Colorado River is evaporating, and climate change is largely to blame

ED: reprinted from 2018 for its still-current relevance.

Colorado River water held back by the Hoover Dam. IMAGE: SHUTTERSTOCK / ROCKET PHOTOS – HQ STOCK

An hour’s drive from Las Vegas stands America’s Hoover Dam, a commanding barrier of concrete holding back the trillions of gallons of Colorado River water held inside Lake Mead.

The dam is a proud place, built by thousands of hands and with 5 million barrels


Rising temperatures sucking water out of the Colorado River

Photo: The All American Canal, which carries Colorado River into the Imperial Valley in Southern California. California uses more Colorado River water than any other state. BRENT STIRTON/GETTY IMAGES

Rising temperatures are undermining the source of one third of Southern California’s drinking water: the Colorado River. A new study by the U.S. Geological Survey finds the river’s flow has shrunk by about seven percent over the past 30 years.



Opinion: Desalination plant in Southern California is important to water security

Photo: Workers prepare a desalination plant for service at the Charles Meyer Desalination Facility in Santa Barbara this year. (Jim Gensheimer/Bay Area News Group)

Climate change is all around us. Extreme weather conditions including recent Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria demonstrate the intensity and impact of climate change on our environment. We’ve seen California and other parts of the West Coast fight large, uncontrollable wildfires and our neighbors in Mexico


Who controls the water? Arizona agencies slug it out

The Hoover Dam holds back water on the Colorado River to form Lake Mead, an important supply of water to Southern California, Nevada and Arizona. Photo: Irfan Khan, Los Angeles Times 2015

The turf war pits the Arizona Department of Water Resources, which manages water issues statewide, against the agency operating the Central Arizona Project, the 336-mile-long canal that brings Colorado River water to Tucson and Phoenix. The proceedings are


Rewilding Santa Monica’s Thoroughly Artificial Beach

Shorebirds work the surfline at Santa Monica Beach : Photo: Jason Goldman

In the early 1900s, L.A. County beaches were not yet the tourist destination they would one day become. The pier in Santa Monica was completed in 1909, but it wasn’t for another few decades that the beach itself would itself become a destination. "At that time, Miami was the place to be, and this beach did not look


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