The bemused Brits at the Economist paid Pat Mulroy a visit:
The main reason why Lake Mead, currently only 40% full, has been getting emptier is a decade-long drought. Whether this is a cyclical and normal event, or an early sign of climate change, is unclear. But even if the drought ends, most scientists think global warming will cause flows on the Colorado River to decrease by 10-30% in the next half century, says Douglas Kenney, the director of a water-policy programme at the University of Colorado Law School.
The consequences seem dire:
Does every middle-class house really need a lawn in a desert? Ms Mulroy has already started paying Las Vegans to rip out their turf and opt for desert landscaping, which can be chic. Her own husband put up a fight but lost. So out went that lawn, too, just as the low-flow toilets and taps came in.
The increased frequency of drought observed in eastern Africa over the last 20 years is likely to continue as long as global temperatures continue to rise, according to new research published in Climate Dynamics.
This poses increased risk to the estimated 17.5 million people in the Greater Horn of Africa who currently face potential food shortages. (emphasis added)