US officials to review deal on sharing Colorado River water


The so-called “bathtub ring” showing the high water mark at Blue Mesa Reservoir has expanded this year because of the drought. The reservoir is barely 1/3rd full, and its water level has dropped about 70 feet. Blue Mesa’s water level is decreasing by four to six inches every day.

LAS VEGAS — Federal water managers are starting to review a crucial 2007 agreement for seven Western states to share drought-diminished water supplies from the Colorado River ahead talks about revising and renewing it beginning in 2026.

U.S. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt said Friday that he wants a report next December.

The 2007 guidelines established a schedule of water cutbacks to states if levels keep falling at two key reservoirs.

The review comes as the states are enacting a separate drought contingency plan signed this year.

It has Arizona and Nevada committed to taking less water from the river in a bid to prop up reservoir levels and avoid more severe cuts in the 2007 guidelines.

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