Federal officials are weighing multiple options for how to respond to dropping water levels at Lake Powell, above the Glen Canyon Dam, but some advocates say an important option is being left off the table, E&E reports. Officials from the Bureau of Reclamation, a division of DOI, have presented options to stakeholder groups in recent days, all of which would seek to enable the dam to continue to produce hydroelectricity.
With all of those options requiring significant time and money, however, advocates like Kyle Roerink, head of the Great Basin Water Network, say Reclamation should be open to ending hydroelectric generation there and focus on improving the health of the Colorado River overall by ensuring water is able to continue flowing to the Lower Basin and Fort Mead above the Hoover Dam. Systemic overuse, and a climate-fueled megadrought have dropped water levels at the Glen Canyon dam to near the deadpool point at which water can no longer flow over the dam to produce electricity. “We have to ask: Is it worth keeping Glen Canyon an industrial zone for power generation when the river is begging us to stop being so wasteful?” Roerink said. (E&E $)