IE 11 Not Supported

For optimal browsing, we recommend Chrome, Firefox or Safari browsers.

It’s Not Just Rivers That Are Running Dry in the West

There are underground rivers too.

There has been a great deal of reporting of late about the Colorado River and how it is running dry and will cause a water crisis. There are other underground rivers and water systems called aquifers that can be huge pools of fresh water that is stored underground. These were created over thousands of years, but can be diminished in a matter of decades.

See this: “Wells are running dry in drought-weary Southwest as foreign-owned farms guzzle water to feed cattle overseas.”

Yes, this story is more about the challenge of agricultural firms drawing water from the ground, but you can see what the impact will be long term. Nothing is infinitive and all the wells will run dry eventually — starting with residential wells that are not as deep.

It is an area of water rights that will need to be addressed either through legislation or litigation. With the slow pace of reform and legislation, I’m betting the wells will run dry first.
Eric Holdeman is a contributing writer for Emergency Management magazine and is the former director of the King County, Wash., Office of Emergency Management.