2021-08-30 40 Million People Rely on the Colorado River, But It’s Drying Up Fast. What Happens Next?
Category: Peace or Violence
Sub-category: Resource depletion (Water in USA)
Prompted by, Aug 30: 40 Million People Rely on the Colorado River, But it’s Drying Up Fast. What Happens Next?
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
For the Love of Beauty, you might forward this posting. It is a pressing matter for Canadians.
What Happens Next?
Below, I have woven postings together that bring us to this place.
A review of the 20-year record says: it is likely that the American SouthWest WILL NOT get its act together. In which case,
- there will be a flow of environmental refugees because of the depletion of the water resource
- Canadians will wake up to find that large-scale export of water is in place. There will be “equity interests” in the water – – big profits for investors, the complicit, the collaborators. Big Government + Big Business. SNC Lavalin is one of the beneficiaries.
- The chasm between the haves and have-nots will grow wider. The price of water will escalate.
- Violence increases with inequity.
- Police and armed forces have a growing presence
THE PATH WE NEED TO TROD
Scientists point the way; Quantum physicists are one example. I’ve looked around. You will see recent postings on my blog: Cellular biologist Bruce Lipton, author of The Biology of Belief. He’s working in the trenches. Doing video discussions, animated videos – – explaining, teaching. I find his work positive and helpful.
Bruce is not the only scientist who is getting “out there”. There are thousands around the Planet. Many of them are networked. Not everyone rides the same train or aligns with the same, or only one, leader. Rapid progress is thus possible.
I don’t like the destination easily predicted by the most recent news on Lakes Mead and Powell (the 2 largest reservoirs in the U.S., both on the Colorado River); I don’t like the rape of Nature, or Violence; I do not like police states. We don’t have to go there.
Check out scientists like Bruce Liption. Join in. Talk with people. Canadians need to understand the implications of the Colorado River. BUT fear generates stress, generates disease (whether of mind, body or spirit). Touch a human being. We can get through this with the right leaders, and without violence. The Earth has to be protected. Or we go extinct!!
The Desert Museum Phoenix, AZ. Two large dioramas on 4X4 legs stood outside. In the early 1980’s.
If you were Canadian and gazing upon those dioramas, you may have heard the same words, succinct and clear, in your head: if ever there is a war between Canada and the United States, it will be over water.
Diorama #1 was labeled 1950. Diorama #2 is 1980.
The surface of the surrounding desert was shown horizontally across both, the same, with its undulations, the same elevation.
The water table was across both, but much drawn down by 1980. Irrigated orange groves are one culprit.
Wherever the surface of the desert intersects with the water table, there is an oasis. The oases are named and numbered. On the left of each diorama there is a numbered list of the oases. Between 1950 and 1980 the number of oases dramatically declined because of the falling water table.
A voice in my head said, if ever there is a war between Canada and the United States, it will be over water. I agreed and I thought that the dioramas spoke loudly and powerfully to the people of Arizona. I thought of the number of people who would see the dioramas. They would take action. Newscasts and publications would pick it up.
I was dismayed by silence and inaction. I took to daydreaming that if a million dollars landed in my lap, I’d take out ads in the American SouthWest to alert them to the situation: Please change paths! You are headed for an avoidable armageddon.
RESOURCE DEPLETION, THE AMERICAN SOUTHWEST AND CANADA
(Some “CONTENTS” are just links; If there’s a number, Scroll down to the elaboration.)
- RIDDLE: LAKE MEAD IS EVAPORATING. HOW CAN “DEEPER STRAWS” MAKE SENSE?
2. 40 MILLION PEOPLE RELY ON THE COLORADO RIVER, BUT IT’S DRYING UP FAST. WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
3. WATER AND ENERGY GO HAND-IN-HAND. TWO DECADES OF RESISTANCE IN WESTERN CANADA TO STOP THE EXPORT OF WATER AND ENERGY TO THE SINK-HOLE, THE SOUTHWESTERN U.S.
4. EXPORT WATER FROM THE NORTHERN PART OF THE CONTINENT TO THE SOUTH?
GOVERNMENT WORKING WITH CORPORATES TO APPROPRIATE THE PUBLIC GOOD (WATER AND ENERGY) TO GET RICH
2019-08 Water export, History: The determination to make water accessible for money-making goes back to the first trade deal with the U.S.
2019-01-24 Export of Water, for profit. Economic argument. “You cannot give up something that gives you income”. In a system that measures success by expansion – – every year “more”, always “growth” in sales. . . . ?When the product is water?
Includes the experience of the Aral Sea in the words of an old fisherman; the Salton Sea in California, similar; attempted export of water from Canada through a system of dams to the U.S.;
2006-12-05 Water: now in the hands of the Dept of Industry and Resources.
2018-12-15 Submission, International Trade, re Export of Water. Details of Agri-Food Canada’s financial support for businesses that expand export of water from Canada.
SUPPLY, WHERE DOES THE WATER COME FROM, FOR EXPORT?
By what process and document does the Federal Government have authority in the arena of water export? Let alone from their offices in Ottawa decide from which community or province in Canada the water will be exported? (the businesses they provide financial and other support to, for the purpose of expanding export of water for profit.) Which citizens gave up their responsibility for protection of local water supplies? How did the designation of a huge untapped market for Canadian water on the other side of the Pacific Ocean come about?)
LONG WARNED: VERY SERIOUS RESOURCE DEPLETION IN THE AMERICAN SOUTHWEST
GUTTING OF THE CANADIAN WATER RESEARCH INSTITUTE (CWRI); REMOVE WATER FROM THE OVERSIGHT OF CITIZENS. TO AN “INSTITUTE” BEHIND CURTAINS AT THE UNIVERSITY. WHERE GOVERNMENT AND CORPORATE MONEY COME TOGETHER.
- The job of the CWRI was to equip the people of Canada with wisdom for the Protection of Water. Some rubble from the gutting was moved into Canadian Universities, into “Institutes” that are somehow immune from public scrutiny. The funding includes corporate-sector money; Government (public) money, extreme conflicts-of-interest, self-interest; and complicity. Research aligned with corporate influence gets done; research that does not have “the potential for commercialization” (i.e. research that might serve to protect “the commons” or “the public interest”) does not get done.
2021-02-14 The New Canada Water Agency. Includes whether through water issues it’s possible to get a handle on the distinctions between revolution, insurgency, counter-insurgency, etc.
The question is addressed more thoroughly in Connection between state of police and America wants our water
5. INTEGRATION OF THE AMERICAN AND CANADIAN MILITARY. . . . Hmmm?
How many of the 40 million become environmental refugees if the River no longer delivers water, or not enough? How many become unruly and more violent?
And yes, I wonder WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? I wonder if those troops in Afghanistan are going to find deployment at home? I wonder about the Canada-U.S. Troop Exchange Agreement.
We’ve watched the clock ticking down on Lakes Mead and Powell f0r a long time. Abraham Lustgarten (the journalist who wrote “40 Million People Rely on the Colorado River, But It’s Drying Up Fast” tells how much is lost to evaporation in this Climate. And he provides IDEAS that should be implemented for mitigation.
We can help bring about action by adding PRESSURE and RESISTANCE. I believe that Canadians have as much to lose as Americans, if you see the larger picture.
1. RIDDLE: LAKE MEAD IS EVAPORATING. HOW CAN “DEEPER STRAWS” MAKE SENSE?
Glancing occasionally southward from Canada over years, I’ve used the two reservoirs,
Lakes Mead and Powell (largest in the U.S.), as a water thermometer.
I did not tell you my Interpretation of the May update because it was so stupid, it could not be. 2021-05-30 . . . updates on Lake Mead and Lake Powell. And warnings to Canadians.
Under title ANSWER TO THE WATER INTAKE PIPE IN LAKE MEAD, I provided to you what was reported, with no comment:
. . . An $817 million project (completed in 2015) to construct a “third straw” to draw water from Lake Mead at the 860-foot level provides security. Two other “straws” take water at the 1,000-foot and 1,050-foot levels.
The last time Lake Mead reached full capacity was in 1983.
The Riddle to me. Alarm bells have been sounding for decades. I remember when the water intake pipe to deliver water to Las Vegas had a shrinking two feet to go before it would be hanging high and dry above the falling surface of the Lake Mead reservoir behind the Hoover Dam.
Then came the intention of Vegas Water Officials to unilaterally appropriate water from agricultural lands to their north. The rural people went ballistic; I believe that ended that plan and the hubris behind it.
There are now “straws” to draw water, as the surface of the reservoir drops to
- 1,050 feet, then
- to 1.000 feet, and further
- to 860 feet
Earlier, I reported that the cost of these remedies ran to something more than $800 million. The article 40 million people rely . . . the River is running dry adds
“the construction of a $1.4 billion drainage hole”.
I was at Lake Powell, also on the Colorado River, in the 1990’s. I was not expecting the comic (if not tragic) “bathtub rings” with wharfs suspended far above water on the sides of that reservoir. More recent pictures show the water yet further away.
My Interpretation on May 30th, about the “straws”: there’s something I don’t understand. No one would be that stupid. On top of all, they are fast losing their hydro-electric capacity, too.
Abraham Lustgarten’s article, August 30th, below:
A. Describes a bit of the “how” of the engineering of the straws, except that this is a drainage hole
I stepped into a yellow cage large enough to fit three standing adults and was lowered 600 feet through a black hole into the ground. There, at the bottom, amid pooling water and dripping rock, was an enormous machine driving a cone-shaped drill bit into the earth. The machine was carving a cavernous, 3-mile tunnel beneath the bottom of the nation’s largest freshwater reservoir, Lake Mead.
B. Sets the number of people dependent on the water in the Colorado River at 40 million. In 2009-10, 22 million was the number. I suspect that the numbers have become more realistic; they might include the people on the Delta of the Colorado River. They are sometimes not counted; the tail of the River bends westward to the Atlantic Ocean; the Delta is in Mexico.
Note: I phoned the lead researcher for the 2009 Scripps Institute of Oceanography Report on the Colorado River which I judged to be alarming. He (study coauthor Tim Barnett) was pessimistic about Effective Action in the U.S. to stop what was happening. Scripps intentionally used percentage risk numbers hoping that this different way of reporting would goad Officials to real action.
2010-01-26 Scripps Institute of Oceanography, Americans running out of water. Backgrounder
C. Lustgarten explains: The current shortage agreement, negotiated between the states in 2007, only addresses shortages down to a lake elevation of 1,025 feet. After that, . . .
D. Lustgarten helps make sense of The Riddle I couldn’t understand. It’s bizarre or stupid or both:
The tunnel far below represented Nevada’s latest salvo in a simmering water war: the construction of a $1.4 billion drainage hole to ensure that if the lake ever ran dry, Las Vegas could get the very last drop.
I left a message for Abraham Lustgarten. I’d like to add the Desert Museum dioramas and a Canadian perspective to his vault of information.
I doubt what I say is true, that the remedial actions are bizarre or stupid or both. The actions make sense to SOMEONE, to SOME INTERESTS.
There is ample recording on this blog: American “Interests” APPROPRIATE RESOURCES they want, one way or another. More on that below.
2. 40 Million People Rely on the Colorado River, But It’s Drying Up Fast. What Happens Next?
Credit: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images
by Abraham Lustgarten, Aug 27, 2021
One of the country’s most important sources of fresh water is in peril,
the latest victim of the accelerating climate crisis.
On a 110-degree day several years ago, surrounded by piles of sand and rock in the desert outside of Las Vegas, I stepped into a yellow cage large enough to fit three standing adults and was lowered 600 feet through a black hole into the ground. There, at the bottom, amid pooling water and dripping rock, was an enormous machine driving a cone-shaped drill bit into the earth. The machine was carving a cavernous, 3-mile tunnel beneath the bottom of the nation’s largest freshwater reservoir, Lake Mead.
Lake Mead, a reservoir formed by the construction of the Hoover Dam in the 1930s, is one of the most important pieces of infrastructure on the Colorado River, supplying fresh water to Nevada, California, Arizona and Mexico. The reservoir hasn’t been full since 1983. In 2000, it began a steady decline caused by epochal drought. On my visit in 2015, the lake was just about 40% full. A chalky ring on the surrounding cliffs marked where the waterline once reached, like the residue on an empty bathtub. The tunnel far below represented Nevada’s latest salvo in a simmering water war: the construction of a $1.4 billion drainage hole to ensure that if the lake ever ran dry, Las Vegas could get the very last drop.
For years, experts in the American West have predicted that, unless the steady overuse of water was brought under control, the Colorado River would no longer be able to support all of the 40 million people who depend on it. Over the past two decades, Western states took incremental steps to save water, signed agreements to share what was left and then, like Las Vegas, did what they could to protect themselves. But they believed the tipping point was still a long way off.
Like the record-breaking heat waves and the ceaseless mega-fires, the decline of the Colorado River has been faster than expected. This year, even though rainfall and snowpack high up in the Rocky Mountains were at near-normal levels, the parched soils and plants stricken by intense heat absorbed much of the water, and inflows to Lake Powell were around one-fourth of their usual amount. The Colorado’s flow has already declined by nearly 20%, on average, from its flow throughout the 1900s, and if the current rate of warming continues, the loss could well be 50% by the end of this century.
Earlier this month, federal officials declared an emergency water shortage on the Colorado River for the first time. The shortage declaration forces reductions in water deliveries to specific states, beginning with the abrupt cutoff of nearly one-fifth of Arizona’s supply from the river, and modest cuts for Nevada and Mexico, with more negotiations and cuts to follow. But it also sounded an alarm: one of the country’s most important sources of fresh water is in peril, another victim of the accelerating climate crisis.
Americans are about to face all sorts of difficult choices about how and where to live as the climate continues to heat up. States will be forced to choose which coastlines to abandon as sea levels rise, which wildfire-prone suburbs to retreat from and which small towns cannot afford new infrastructure to protect against floods or heat. What to do in the parts of the country that are losing their essential supply of water may turn out to be the first among those choices.
The Colorado River’s enormous significance extends well beyond the American West. In addition to providing water for the people of seven states, 29 federally recognized tribes and northern Mexico, its water is used to grow everything from the carrots stacked on supermarket shelves in New Jersey to the beef in a hamburger served at a Massachusetts diner. The power generated by its two biggest dams — the Hoover and Glen Canyon — is marketed across an electricity grid that reaches from Arizona to Wyoming.
The formal declaration of the water crisis arrived days after the Census Bureau released numbers showing that, even as the drought worsened over recent decades, hundreds of thousands more people have moved to the regions that depend on the Colorado.
Chalky, mineral-stained rocks on the side of the Hoover Dam mark where the waterline once reached. Credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images
oenix expanded more over the past 10 years than any other large American city, while smaller urban areas across Arizona, Nevada, Utah and California each ranked among the fastest-growing places in the country. The river’s water supports roughly 15 million more people today than it did when Bill Clinton was elected president in 1992. These statistics suggest that the climate crisis and explosive development in the West are on a collision course. And it raises the question: What happens next?
Since about 70% of water delivered from the Colorado River goes to growing crops, not to people in cities, the next step will likely be to demand large-scale reductions for farmers and ranchers across millions of acres of land, forcing wrenching choices about which crops to grow and for whom — an omen that many of America’s food-generating regions might ultimately have to shift someplace else as the climate warms.
California, so far shielded from major cuts, has already agreed to reductions that will take effect if the drought worsens. But it may be asked to do more. Its enormous share of the river, which it uses to irrigate crops across the Imperial Valley and for Los Angeles and other cities, will be in the crosshairs when negotiations over a diminished Colorado begin again. The Imperial Irrigation District there is the largest single water rights holder from the entire basin and has been especially resistant to compromise over the river. It did not sign the drought contingency plan laying out cuts that other big players on the Colorado system agreed to in 2019.
New Mexico, Colorado, Utah and Wyoming — states in the river’s Upper Basin — will most likely also face pressure to use less water. Should that happen, places like Utah that hoped to one day support faster development and economic growth with their share of the river may have to surrender their ambition.
The negotiations that led to the region being even minimally prepared for this latest shortage were agonizing, but they were merely a warm-up for the pain-inflicting cuts and sacrifices that almost certainly will be required if the water shortages persist over the coming decades. The region’s leaders, for all their efforts to compromise, have long avoided these more difficult conversations. One way or another, farms will have to surrender their water, and cities will have to live with less of it. Time has run out for other options.
Western states arrived at this crucible in large part because of their own doing. The original multistate compact that governs the use of the Colorado, which was signed in 1922, was exuberantly optimistic: The states agreed to divide up an estimated total amount of water that turned out to be much more than what would actually flow. Nevertheless, with the building of the Hoover Dam to collect and store river water, and the development of the Colorado’s plumbing system of canals and pipelines to deliver it, the West was able to open a savings account to fund its extraordinary economic growth. Over the years since, those states have overdrawn the river’s average deposits. It should be no surprise that even without the pressures of climate change, such a plan would lead to bankruptcy.
Making a bad situation worse, leaders in Western states have allowed wasteful practices to continue that add to the material threat facing the region. A majority of the water used by farms — and thus much of the river — goes to growing nonessential crops like alfalfa and other grasses that feed cattle for meat production. Much of those grasses are also exported to feed animals in the Middle East and Asia. Short of regulating which types of crops are allowed, which state authorities may not even have the authority to do, it may fall to consumers to drive change. Water usage data suggests that if Americans avoid meat one day each week they could save an amount of water equivalent to the entire flow of the Colorado each year, more than enough water to alleviate the region’s shortages.
Homes and a golf course in Summerlin, Nevada, in suburban Las Vegas. In recent decades, hundreds of thousands more people have moved to the regions that depend on the Colorado River. Credit: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images
Water is also being wasted because of flaws in the laws. The rights to take water from the river are generally distributed — like deeds to property — based on seniority. It is very difficult to take rights away from existing stakeholders, whether cities or individual ranchers, so long as they use the water allocated to them. That system creates a perverse incentive: Across the basin, ranchers often take their maximum allocation each year, even if just to spill it on the ground, for fear that, if they don’t, they could lose the right to take that water in the future. Changes in the laws that remove the threat of penalties for not exercising water rights, or that expand rewards for ranchers who conserve water, could be an easy remedy.
A breathtaking amount of the water from the Colorado — about 10% of the river’s recent total flow — simply evaporates off the sprawling surfaces of large reservoirs as they bake in the sun. Last year, evaporative losses from Lake Mead and Lake Powell alone added up to almost a million acre feet of water — or nearly twice what Arizona will be forced to give up now as a result of this month’s shortage declaration. These losses are increasing as the climate warms. Yet federal officials have so far discounted technological fixes — like covering the water surface to reduce the losses — and they continue to maintain both reservoirs, even though both of them are only around a third full. If the two were combined, some experts argue, much of those losses could be avoided.
For all the hard-won progress made at the negotiating table, it remains to be seen whether the stakeholders can tackle the looming challenges that come next. Over the years, Western states and tribes have agreed on voluntary cuts, which defused much of the political chaos that would otherwise have resulted from this month’s shortage declaration, but they remain disparate and self-interested parties hoping they can miraculously agree on a way to manage the river without truly changing their ways. For all their wishful thinking, climate science suggests there is no future in the region that does not include serious disruptions to its economy, growth trajectory and perhaps even quality of life.
The uncomfortable truth is that difficult and unpopular decisions are now unavoidable. Prohibiting some water uses as unacceptable — long eschewed as antithetical to personal freedoms and the rules of capitalism — is now what’s needed most.
The laws that determine who gets water in the West, and how much of it, are based on the principle of “beneficial use” — generally the idea that resources should further economic advancement. But whose economic advancement? Do we support the farmers in Arizona who grow alfalfa to feed cows in the United Arab Emirates? Or do we ensure the survival of the Colorado River, which supports some 8% of the nation’s GDP?
Earlier this month, the Bureau of Reclamation released lesser-noticed projections for water levels, and they are sobering. The figures include an estimate for what the bureau calls “minimum probable in flow” — or the low end of expectations. Water levels in Lake Mead could drop by another 40 vertical feet by the middle 2023, ultimately reaching just 1,026 feet above sea level — an elevation that further threatens Lake Mead’s hydroelectric power generation for about 1.3 million people in Arizona, California and Nevada. At 895 feet, the reservoir would become what’s called a “dead pool”; water would no longer be able to flow downstream.
The bureau’s projections mean we are close to uncharted territory. The current shortage agreement, negotiated between the states in 2007, only addresses shortages down to a lake elevation of 1,025 feet. After that, the rules become murky, and there is greater potential for fraught legal conflicts. Northern states in the region, for example, are likely to ask why the vast evaporation losses from Lake Mead, which stores water for the southern states, have never been counted as a part of the water those southern states use. Fantastical and expensive solutions that have previously been dismissed by the federal government — like the desalinization of seawater, towing icebergs from the Arctic or pumping water from the Mississippi River through a pipeline — are likely to be seriously considered. None of this, however, will be enough to solve the problem unless it’s accompanied by serious efforts to lower carbon dioxide emissions, which are ultimately responsible for driving changes to the climate.
Meanwhile, population growth in Arizona and elsewhere in the basin is likely to continue, at least for now, because short-term fixes so far have obscured the seriousness of the risks to the region. Water is still cheap, thanks to the federal subsidies for all those dams and canals that make it seem plentiful. The myth persists that technology can always outrun nature, that the American West holds endless possibility. It may be the region’s undoing. As the author Wallace Stegner once wrote: “One cannot be pessimistic about the West. This is the native home of hope.”
3. WATER AND ENERGY GO HAND-IN-HAND
TWO DECADES OF RESISTANCE IN WESTERN CANADA TO STOP THE EXPORT OF WATER AND ENERGY TO THE WESTERN U.S.
Battles in Saskatchewan and Alberta to stop water and energy (electricity) projects have been waged for two decades plus. The projects are for diversions to the U.S.
IN MY EXPERIENCE, these projects go underground when they meet strong public opposition. Former Politicians and Technocrats become industry and law firm consultants with strong connections to the workings of Government, in spite of Laws that prohibit. The projects do not go away; they become invisible. And suddenly, a fait accompli.
2011-04-01 You can see why we don’t have a National Water Policy. There’s too much money to be made if it can be privatized (like oil and gas). In bulk and bottled.
CRITICALLY IMPORTANT EVENT: Five-city tour: Our water is not for sale. Alternative Water Futures in Alberta. I will attend.
This posting has a macro map that shows some of the intended water diversions.
There’s a list of links that illustrates, among other things, the attempts at establishing “corridors” for the export of water and electricity.
The Hoover and Glen Canyon dams, the largest reservoirs in the U.S., are approaching water levels that are prohibitive of electrical power generation. Keep in mind that nuclear power generation is dependent on abundant, flowing cold water for cooling; with warming rivers it is no longer an option in many places.
Attempted water and electricity export from Canada, under private ownership with publicly-funded infrastructure, an example: 2011-05-26 Wikileaks Shines Light on Alberta’s $16-Billion Electricity Scandal. Should move a few people!
(A couple moved from the Lethbridge AB area where the publicly-funded infrastructure would tie into the consortium that would make the money. They moved to Saskatchewan when they realized what was happening. Their story was fed into cross-border networks and played a role in Shining the Light on the intended fleecing, the corruption. The $16 billion scandal was stopped by citizen action. (The breadth of Wikileaks, Julian Assange’s contributions to expose corruption in Government is seldom understood and recognized.))
As we have addressed in the past: with the falling water levels comes the loss of hydro-electric capacity of the dams, along with everything else. The electrical turbines will cease to run BEFORE the reservoirs are emptied.
4. EXPORT WATER FROM THE NORTHERN PART OF THE CONTINENT TO THE SOUTH? TO THE SINK-HOLE?
INFORMATION SENT TO A MEETING OF SASKATCHEWAN & MANITOBA OFFICIALS
(Former Premier Brad Wall of Saskatchewan) is a “co-spearhead” of the “largest on the planet” “Canada-U.S. Western Energy Corridor”. (Link no longer valid)
The Americans are fast running out of water which also means hydro-electricity (report of the Scripps Institute of Oceanography at the University of California at SanDiego, (Link invalid; excerpt copied below).
There is a 50/50 chance that the hydro-electric power generation at the Hoover and Glen Canyon Dams will cease as of 2017 because of falling water levels, and that the reservoirs (Lake Mead and Lake Powell, the two largest in the U.S.) will be dry by 2021.
The remedy IS NOT to export the water problem into Canada. It is not possible for us to meet the American need for water, no matter how much money a few people might make from the attempt. They are creating disaster for us all, instead of addressing the actual problem; it’s called Denial.
We are talking about electricity and water for 22 million Americans. It includes Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, etc.. It includes the irrigated fruits and vegetables that are sent from the area not only into the rest of the U.S. but into Canada. We are talking about the use of electricity to run irrigation pumps versus the need for city-dwellers for air conditioning during hot summer months. We are talking about if there is no water there is no civilization in these areas.
The public consultation process that took place in Saskatchewan this past summer shows clearly that the Wall Government does not have public support for its energy development project. Premier Brad Wall’s “largest on the planet” “Canada – U.S. Western Energy corridor” does not serve the interests of people on the prairies.
There are corporate interests that are running the show. They want nuclear electricity sources (privately-owned) in Saskatchewan and in Alberta for tar sands expansion AND for electricity-export into the lucrative market in the western U.S.
Saskatchewanians have told the Wall Govt that our electricity needs can be met by a number of means. We do not want to be used by these corporate interests; we do not want the very expensive electricity that nuclear is. We do not want to be investing in the obsolete. Nobody does.
The status quo will destroy us. It is based on energy sources that are fast depleting. Investment in Brad Wall’s American plan will mean huge debt and all the investment is in the wrong place. We MUST transition to other forms of energy production and conservation. When the resource an economy is built upon (oil and gas, water) is all gone, the economy falls fast and hard.
We live on the prairie. We are very dependent upon the Saskatchewan Rivers that feed into Lake Manitoba. The glaciers that provide the summer-time feed of water are past “peak flow”; they are on the downhill side of volume of water released (reference the Canadian National Water Research Institute (NWRI) report by Pietroniro in about 2003).
The South Saskatchewan River at Saskatoon carries less than 20% of the volume of water it carried in 1912. There is a clearly-established trend-line that ends at “zero”, the same experience as the Colorado River faces more imminently.
The American (Wall’s) energy plans (nuclear) cannot be met in the U.S. because they don’t have enough water. The American corporate interests do not care about the impact of more water demands on the prairie water supply.
(INSERT: Development of the Saskatchewan tar sands is part of Wall’s agenda (“non-renewable energy sources”). Maybe I should have mentioned that northern Saskatchewan already suffers from the acid rain created by just the current tar sands production in Alberta. Manitobans should take into consideration the impact on their province and water resources as Saskatchewan joins the Alberta corporate “development” plan. The desecration will sterilize the northern parts of Alberta, Saskatchewan AND Manitoba. Wind and water are oblivious to political boundaries. The effects of acid rain are well-known. Canadian regulations are not being enforced in the hinterland. In Ontario, yes.)
This is the context in which Brad Wall’s promotions need to be assessed.
I hope this will be helpful to some.
Sincerely and best wishes,
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
(Link no longer valid http://www.vancouversun.com/Business/Premiers+governors+promote+Canada+energy+corridor/1695862/story.html)
Premiers, governors, promote Canada-U.S. energy corridor
By Jason Fekete, Canwest News Service June 14, 2009
PARK CITY, Utah — Western premiers and U.S. governors on Sunday hailed their push to develop a cross-border Western Energy Corridor that will be the largest on the planet and one that develops both non-renewable (INSERT: tar sands) and clean-energy (INSERT: nuclear) options.
Spearheaded by Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall and Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer, the initiative could open new markets to the three Prairie provinces, which are all major energy producers in both renewables and fossil fuels.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – —
Dry Lake Mead? 50-50 chance by 2021 seen
Study cites warming, water use and growing Colorado River deficit
|This view of Lake Mead was taken last July 26, during the seventh straight year of drought that had caused the lake to drop more than 100 feet to its lowest level since the late 1960s.|
|Ethan Miller / Getty Images file|
msnbc.com staff and news service reports
updated 12:57 p.m. CT, Tues., Feb. 12, 2008
What are the chances that Lake Mead, a key source of water for more than 22 million people in the Southwest, would ever go dry? A new study says it’s 50 percent by 2021 if warming continues and water use is not curtailed.
“We were stunned at the magnitude of the problem and how fast it was coming at us,” co-author Tim Barnett of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography said in a statement. “Make no mistake, this water problem is not a scientific abstraction, but rather one that will impact each and every one of us that live in the Southwest.”
= = = == = = == = = ==
(3) SASKATCHEWAN AND MANITOBA TO HOLD JOINT CABINET MEETING IN YORKTON
News Release – January 22, 2010 (Link no longer valid)
The City of Yorkton will play host to the first-ever joint cabinet meeting between the governments of Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Premiers Brad Wall and Greg Selinger, along with members of their respective cabinets, will meet on February 2.
“Working more closely with our neighbours and expanding regional co-operation in the west has been among my government’s top intergovernmental priorities,” Wall said. “I’m pleased that Premier Selinger and his team share our interest in discussing practical ways Saskatchewan and Manitoba can collaborate to benefit the people of our two great provinces.”
“Manitoba will be assuming responsibility as Chair of the provincial Premiers’ Council of the Federation from Saskatchewan later this year,” Selinger added. “Our meeting in Yorkton will also give us a good opportunity to discuss ways to co-operate in addressing important national priorities.”
Topics for discussion will include highways and transportation; energy and the environment; and Canada-US relations.
5. INTEGRATION OF THE AMERICAN AND CANADIAN MILITARY
2008-02-27 Troop Exchange Agreement with U.S.: Brief History of Invasions + Letter-to-Editor
2008-02-29 Troop Exchange Agreement: Connection to Water – Lake Mead going dry (Hoover Dam, Colorado River)
2008-05-30 Connection between state of police and America wants our water Includes:
2005-11-11 Americans will be AGGRESSIVELY after our Water, Peter Lougheed, Former Premier of Alberta. In the Globe & Mail
2008-05-23 Water: “CANADIANS SHOULD BE SERIOUSLY CONCERNED ABOUT AMERICANS WHO WANT WATER”, Robert F Kennedy Jr, Canadian Press
RELATED, NOT LISTED AT TOP
1991, hundred-million-dollar tanker export from Fanny Bay, B.C., Canada to the U.S. . . . court case still in process, 2016
2016-06-17 Water export, Vander Zalm: B.C. government guilty of misfeasance in long-running water dispute; B.C. businessman waged a two-decade legal battle against his province. A judge finally sided with him; Province appeals damning water export case; Premier Bill Vander Zalm and the Water War Crimes
And as reported from the other side (California), L.A. Times:
1991-03-22 Raining on Water Importer’s Parade: Drought: The latest series of storms may have doused chances that a Santa Barbara firm will get a large contract to import water from Fanny Bay, Vancouver Island, Canada.
1999, Gisborne Lake, Newfoundland . . . bulk export of water by tanker from Gisborne Lake in Newfoundland was almost a national issue. Newfoundland sets out what it saw as the Federal Responsibility on the issue. 1999-10-02 Newfoundland agrees to ban water export, with Ottawa’s help, CBC
Wonderful, thorough and enlightening. Great article Sandra
This (water issues for California and others) is probably and partly why Gov Gavin Newsom is currently today facing a recall to oust him: farmers don’t want water restrictions.
Thank you for that insight, Maureen. Out of curiosity, an internet search turns up:
Top 10 Agricultural Commodities In California
Dairy Products and Milk — $6.37 Billion. …
Grapes — $6.25 Billion. …
Almonds — $5.47 Billion. …
Cattle and Calves — $3.19 Billion. …
Pistachios — $2.62 Billion. …
Strawberries — $2.34 Billion. …
Lettuce — $1.81 Billion. …
Floriculture — $1.22 Billion.
It is not only the rest of the U.S., but Canada that benefits from the agricultural production in California.
In answer to “how much of that output is enabled by water from the Colorado R?”:
If you eat carrots or lettuce in the winter, chances are the Colorado River irrigated those crops.
The Colorado River irrigates 3.2 million acres within the Colorado River Basin itself and 2.5 million acres outside of the basin, places like California’s Imperial Valley. That’s a total area nearly the size of New Hampshire.
We are currently using more water than the river can support, and as the population grows, demands are increasing. Agriculture uses approximately 80 percent of the Colorado River’s water, and cities, towns, hydropower and outdoor recreation need the river’s water to keep flowing.
Of course, nature needs the water too. Fish, plants and wildlife depend on it. All of these competing demands for water requires us to come together to find solutions to protect and conserve this limited resource.
IS not the writing on the wall? Agriculture uses approximately 80 percent of the Colorado River’s water, . . .