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The Deterioration of the Colorado River Essay

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The Colorado RIver is best known for being the principal river of the southern United States and Mexico, but it soon could lose that title. Running about 1,500 miles long, the river is a vital source of water for agricultural and urban areas in the southern desert lands of North America. However over the past decade or so, the river has begun to deteriorate. There are many causes and solutions to the deterioration of the Colorado River.
The Colorado River is formed by small streams created by a huge amount of snowmelt from the Rocky Mountains. The ecology and flow of the river varies highly by region. The river is divided into two different regions, the Upper Basin and the Lower Basin. Beginning in the early 1900s, western states began to build dams in the Colorado river, diverting the water flow to fast growing cities like Los Angeles, San Diego, and Phoenix. The river now services over 30 million in the southwestern parts of the United States and Mexico (Patrick 1). Diverting the water of the nation’s seventh-longest river may be seen has a great accomplishment, however to others this is a great crime against nature. Over the past couple years the river has been running significantly low, since a drought has come up the southwest. At the lakes edge, “bathtub rings”, lines in the rock walls, can be seen showing the decrease in water level. It is recorded in some areas of the river that the water has lowered 130 feet since 2000. Some water resource officials say those areas will never be filled back to normal. The surrounding states must adjust to living with less water or further actions need to be taken to save the river’s water. There has been some talk about adding water to the river to replenish the river but nothing has hap...


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...es and reusing return flows before developing new diversion projects can help the Colorado River get back to normal (Johnson 13).
There are many causes and solutions to the deterioration of the Colorado River. The Colorado River is not the great river it used to be, with an abundant amount of healthy water, thriving wildlife and abundant plant life. With climate change, water salinity, pollution, and natural runoffs, the river’s water quality has deteriorated immensely. However, if communities and environmental groups join forces to research and raise money to find ways to help improve the Colorado River, it can get back to its original condition. This issues affects those who live by the river, concluding that I live somewhere near the river, I would love to see a change in the rivers condition to not only help the nature around it, but to help myself and others.



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