The Eastern US Should Not Send a Single Drop Of Water West
They’ve drained their rivers, and now they want to drain yours.
The western United States continues to languish under a historic drought which has led some people to propose outlandish solutions to the growing problem. One such solution is for a system of pipes and pumps to be built linking the Mississippi and Colorado river basins. The theoretical design would have water pumped from rivers east of the Rocky Mountains to rapidly depleting reservoirs west of the Rocky Mountains.
To such a proposal, the only reasonable response is not one drop.
There are so many things wrong with this proposal it is hard to know where exactly to begin.
For some people, it might be hard to watch the west slowly run out of water, but this is a crisis largely of their own making. Policymakers have skirted the looming issues for decades. They refused to curb development. They refused to put much-needed water restrictions in place for the communities drawing from the Colorado River. Now that the threat is approaching existential levels, their response is to simply take water from someone else.
Giving into such a demand would simply be irresponsible.
Mismanage Your Own River
While there is no doubt that the west is suffering from an extended period of drought, the drought has been exasperated by mismanagement of the rivers. There have been no concrete efforts to manage the water usage of western states up until this point. It is hard to imagine spending billions of dollars on an expansive infrastructure program to pump water from the east to the west when the arid cities of Phoenix and Las Vegas are ringed by swanky golf communities.
While everyone panics about the water levels in the key reservoirs of Arizona and Las Vegas, the golf courses always manage to remain green and lush.
Phoenix and Las Vegas continue to grow and add hundreds of new homes and thousands of new residents year over year.