The premise of a piece I wrote recently over at the Lane Center was that folks in the Colorado River’s Upper Basin are all elbowing up to the front of the line to try to get the next straw slurping water out of the big river before it’s too late. The focus was on the state of Colorado’s discussions of a running a giant, multi-billion dollar straw up to Flaming Gorge:
Colorado’s dilemma is the same one found all across the states of the Colorado River Basin. The water is in one place, while the people are in another. Thus you have what amounts to artificial rivers all up and down the Colorado, siphoning and draining and pumping the water away from the Colorado as the basin states try to maximize usage of their legally allotted shares of the river.
In response, an alert reader pointed me to an interesting counter example – a Salt Lake Tribune editorial arguing against a similar project up there:
The Legislature should close the floodgate on any scheme to finance the Lake Powell Pipeline with state funds. Utah can’t afford the pipeline in the current weak economy, the water for the project may become unavailable due to climate change, and other state demands must have higher priority, beginning with education and transportation.
Anyone know if this would be a first?