Explained: Why are Lake Mead water levels rising?
The lake rose 18 inches on August 15, when its level reached 1,042.29 feet from 1,040.71 feet, thanks to heavy rains in the Las Vegas Valley.
COLORADO: Due to gradually declining water levels, there are concerns that Lake Mead, the nation’s largest reservoir, could eventually empty. The Hoover Dam Reservoir on the Colorado River, which flows through Nevada and Arizona, provides water for many residents. The dead water threshold for Lake Mead is getting closer and closer due to the drought in the western United States.
However, lake water levels have risen for the first time in the past three years. On July 27, its water levels were at their lowest (1,040.71 feet). Its levels last fell to this low point in the 1930s, just after its founding. The subsequent rains in the Las Vegas Valley were the heaviest in a decade and severely affected the region.
According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, it started raining daily on July 27. By the time it reached 1,042.29 feet on August 15, the lake had risen 18 inches. According to the study, some places received more than half an inch of rain in just 10 minutes. According to Bronson Mack, a spokesperson for the Southern Nevada Water Authority, the rain would seep into the ground or flow into Lake Mead through the Las Vegas Wash.
Lake Mead has dried up as a result of the mega-drought affecting the western United States. Since the onset of the drought in 2000, water levels have dropped 170 feet. The amount of precipitation was not the only factor affecting Lake Mead water levels. Levels often changed seasonally due to snowfall falling from the Rocky Mountains. However, due to climate change, it is increasingly difficult to predict seasonal weather patterns. The lake is only about 27% full despite the recent rise in water levels.
Robert Glennon, an expert in water legislation and policy, told Newsweek: “Rainfall storage and seasonality are two key concepts in [Lake Mead]. also snow. As a result, although many people believe that the West stores its water in lakes, the mountains and snowpack actually serve as a much larger and more important water storage facility.
If the lake level continues to drop, the dam’s turbines may not be able to generate electricity. The turbines will stop working if the water level drops below 895 feet and the water cannot break through the barrier.
“The shapes of all the western canyons are quite similar. They have an extremely wide top and a very narrow bottom. The Martini glass or the letter V come to mind. And at present, the two reservoirs are located deep in the V-shape at the base of the glass. As a result, the amount of water decreases with altitude. People may not have fully understood how quickly he could start falling once he hit the bottom of the glass “Glennon ended.