This may be stupid but if an oil pipeline can be built from Alaska to the lower 48 why can't a water pipeline be built from the Mississippi River to Lake powell?
This is interesting, 1,000 miles at an average cost of ~7.5 million dollars a mile for 30" pipe. They're spending trillions on much more frivolous things right now.I just read somewhere that they are doing research to run from Davenport, Iowa along interstate 80 to the green River. But of course the environmentalists are saying it will introduce invasive species and contaminated water into the green river. Wish I could remember where I seen it .
Ice just contacted a hotel in Scottsdale, AZ for 87million to house illegals for 3 months, wish I owned that property. I understand the concerns introducing new water into the eco system, but if the southwest is going to continue to grow it's going to have to come up with some kind of water supplement.This is interesting, 1,000 miles at an average cost of ~7.5 million dollars a mile for 30" pipe. They're spending trillions on much more frivolous things right now.
There are / were many desal plants that were in process ... But, the environmental lawsuits hit and stopped all but the one. The one Camp Pendleton military base, that is now up and running. They tried to stop it, but feds put a stop to the frivolous cases and the military built. <-- we need a LOT more of that, because 10 - 15 could take care of most or all of the water needed for CA.They could build desalination plants in California as well. When I was in grad school eons ago, I had a seminar on water and the west. The west doesn’t have a water shortage. The west has a cheap water shortage, once the price of water comes up to offset the price of building a pipeline or numerous desalination plans. They will happen. The powers to be have known that this was coming for the last fifty years. Yet, not one of them has been willing to make a hard decision.
Which would free up some 4 maf per year of the Colorado River?!?There are / were many desal plants that were in process ... But, the environmental lawsuits hit and stopped all but the one. The one Camp Pendleton military base, that is now up and running. They tried to stop it, but feds put a stop to the frivolous cases and the military built. <-- we need a LOT more of that, because 10 - 15 could take care of most or all of the water needed for CA.
Okay, that adds 250,000 af back to the Colorado system or 3 feet to Powell if it all makes it to the lake. Gallon per nut almonds don't bother you?Instead of pumping water from the east, how about having Denver and other east communities stop diverting water from the west. The amount of water Denver takes from the west is ridicules and they plan to double that amount. This year they had close to record amounts of moisture. They are still taking the wests water though.
Actually, you can, but are you willing to pay for it. So, yes we have a cheap water shortage. We could drive tankers down from the Columbia river.Can we buy water to fill up the lake? No.. we have a water problem .
Excellent points. But the Columbia River is already way over-allocated with its own long list of issues. That aint gonna happen.In order to understand the problem you have to step back, as in 100 years back...
This is a deep dive discussion - it is easy to get sucked into this water war as there are so many players.
California is the root cause for where we are today, both in terms of Dams on the river and the resulting lakes, as well as by default, low water levels during drought. The dams are doing what they were designed to do, store water for future use and prevent flooding... and pay for themselves with renewable energy - none of the initial design spec included houseboating satisfaction at Powell. Our pleasure has zero value in regards to the water law contracts.
California was way ahead of the curve understanding the value of water. Look no farther than Owen or Mono Lake if you want to see the future. California will suck you dry.
There are several colliding issues. Climate change (or cycles) and actual water inventory and ownership shares that are measured in defined hard value instead of a variable percentage based on actual replenishment tables. Oh, and greed... and this leads directly to your favorite lobbyist and puppet politician. This also leads to a big room full of millionaire agri guys and even a handful of agri billionaires. Add corp shareholders and mutual funds and the pressure builds. Follow the money... And there is the problem - nobody cares about Lake Powell unless it is too low to deliver 8.24 to Cali and then all hell breaks loose and every politician with a vote is getting a complimentary hand job from every agri lobbyist money can buy. There is more money in this game than there is water.
California agriculture is taking about 80% of the water. Agri teams are NOT motivated to conserve as they will lose anything they do not take by contract. And since they have rights to this water and the water share holder will be punished if they conserve their water share, these farmers are growing high water crops like rice and almonds and alfalfa... much of which is exported - the farmers are basically exporting our water. Google “water requirement for an almond” (1 gallon per nut). Also Google alfalfa water requirement and export - (prepare to get pissed).
Just as Detroit is not longer the factory it once was, maybe it is time to view the Central Valley the same - allow the global producers who are better positioned to produce at greater efficiencies and lower cost be the winner. This agri winner will not be playing farmer in a desert - the winner will enjoy natural watering from rain...
A pipeline is definitely an option. The LADWP did it a hundred years ago with awesome pump less Mulholland inspired designs. All natural flow... There is a ton of white papers on piping fresh water from the Columbia River and Alaska to California. Even your favorite Star Trek star tried to raise 30 billion a few years ago to pipe the Columbia runoff to California. The Columbia makes a lot more sense than the Mississippi - by every measure. There are also ideas to drag an ice berg to the coast.
And of course there is desal - desal works well for urban needs, but not so much for agri needs. Add a remote solar farm to power the desal plant and all is good. Saudi Arabia is a world leader in desal and even California has a plant proving the critics wrong... Look at Israel too, half of all their water is desal.
Until conservation is rewarded and until water shareholders convert hard fixed water shares to percentage of new flows, we are screwed. Unless the agri team reinvents their processes including owning their own desal product.
A handful of very wealthy farmers in California thank you for your unchallenged acceptance of them screwing you and you doing nothing.
If you want to be heard then speak up. Reach out to the same politicians the lobbyist are whispering to and let them hear your concern to balance output to input with a max of 8.24 - NO balance, this allows a larger lake to park water.
It is clear doing nothing will result in a dry lake just like Mono and Owens.
Self educate and follow the money...