Mexico, 2 U.S. states could see Colorado River cutback in 2020

05/09/2018 The Denver Post

colorado riverDENVER — Mexico and the U.S. states of Arizona and Nevada face a better-than-even possibility of getting less water from the Colorado River in 2020 because of a persistent drought, water managers said Wednesday.

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, which manages the river, released projections showing a 52 percent chance the river’s biggest reservoir, Lake Mead in Arizona and Nevada, will fall low enough in 2020 to trigger cutbacks under agreements governing the system.

If that happens, those two states and Mexico would be the first see their share of water cut. Further drops in the reservoir could trigger cuts for other states.

The chances of a shortfall rise to 64 percent in 2021 and 68 percent in 2022, the bureau said.

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