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U.S. to hold back Lake Powell water to protect hydropower

Western Drought Colorado River
Posted at 4:23 PM, May 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-03 19:23:26-04

Federal water officials have announced they'll keep hundreds of billions of gallons of Colorado River water inside Lake Powell instead of letting it flow downstream to southwestern states and Mexico.

U.S. Assistant Secretary of Water and Science Tanya Trujillo said Tuesday the move will allow the Glen Canyon Dam to continue producing hydropower while officials strategize how to operate the dam with a lower water elevation.

The decision won't have any immediate impacts on the amount of water allocated for the region’s cities and its farm. But it reflects the compounding challenges facing the region, where roughly 40 million people and a $5 billion-a-year agricultural industry rely on the Colorado River.