Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Utah Covers Actual Water News

While Las Vegas media are lauding the success of the SNWA's $250 million public relations campaign (shiny! flashing! lights!), some Great Basin outlets are instead taking a look at what the agency actually plans to do - which is to destroy the environment in an area the size of Connecticut in the name of protecting profits for real estate developers.
Joe Bauman of the Desert News has over the years done an excellent job of covering the issues involved with the agency's plans to defoliate Central Nevada and Western Utah. This is his latest:
Bauman details the fact that a recent draft study by the U.S. Geological Survey confirms what the Utah Geological Survey said years ago, and that is that SNWA's wells will drop the water table 50 to 100 feet, and impacts could be felt far from the well sites. That means vegetation with relatively shallow root systems will die, and with it wildlife that depends on that vegetation; springs and desert springs will dry up, and with it the land and aquatic animal life that comes with those precious desert water sources.
And - SNWA Water Grab funding sources might want to take a note of this - that means that rare and potentially federally protected species will be affected, and that could mean lengthy court battles. Of course, all along SNWA has claimed that the federal government would step in to stop any "significant" damage to the environment from their scheme, while simultaneously betting that existing federal policy that largely ignores the Endangered Species Act will continue.
It might be worth noting that every one of the Democrats in presidential field have promised renewed vigilence in protecting listed species and enforcing federal environmental law. Just saying.

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