Crisis looms without big cuts to over-tapped Colorado River
Dire consequences could result if states, cities and farms across the American West cannot agree on how to cut the amount of water they draw from the Colorado River. Hydroelectric turbines may stop turning. Las Vegas and Phoenix may be forced to restrict water usage or growth. Farmers may have to stop planting some crops. Yet for years, seven states that depend on the river have allowed more water to be taken from it than nature can replenish. Despite widespread recognition of the crisis, the states missed a deadline this week to propose cuts. And the government stopped short of imposing cuts on its own.