Water Shortage Across Basin States

Today's rain was helpful to the Colorado River, which has been much drier than usual for the past five to six years. Today, the Two Rivers Convention Center held a water seminar to focus on the deficiency of this precious resource.

The Colorado River has a huge commitment to states across the southwest.

The Colorado River supplies water for several states along the southwest. These states are called the basin states and they include Arizona, California, Wyoming, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah and, of course, Colorado.

There has long been discussion and debates over how to properly divide the water among these states. The Colorado River Compact set the rules for the division and some say for the most part it has worked,
but now we are facing a shortage.

Russell George with the Department of Natural Resources says, "A lot of this is triggered because we have been in a drought for a number of years. The 2001 was one of the worst in history."

Now the age– old question becomes even more complex.

"What's our fair share and what's everyone else's? You have to now rethink that in terms of shortage. it's different than fairness in plenty," explains George.

George says that when the original agreement was made, bit was not expected that Arizona and Nevada would grow so quickly, but now with more home development and an increase in population there is a much higher demand for water.
"The invention of air conditioning has made it easier for people to live in the desert so we have seen tremendous growth in the lower basin states," states George.

Officials say they hope that today's discussions will help the states come to an agreement on how to divide water in a drought situation,
such as we are going through right now.