Lake Powell

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Lake Powell

The beauty of Northern Arizona and Southern Utah has been seen by the many who live here, and many others who come to visit. One of the central pieces of this beauty is man made product called Lake Powell. This lake was created in the 1950’s with the building of the Glen Canyon Dam. Glen Canyon then filled with water, making what is now a body of water that supplies power to 22 million people, and recreation which brings in over 500 million dollars per year. (Wilke) There are four reasons for this dam: the regulation of water flow to the Colorado River, supplying power to residents of the southwest, area water usage programs, and water sports recreation. (Draining, 2001) The detractors of the existence of this dam use examples of water loss, hurting of the ecosystem, and long term harmful effects on the southwest. Lake Powell has proven itself to be one of the greatest positive inputs in its area, these inputs greatly outweighing what loss it may bring. Lake Powell should be kept as is to better the lives and the way of life of the people in this area and visitors.

One of the main challenges of keeping Lake Powell full is that the Sierra Club, a very powerful lobbyist in the specific area of environmental impact, now wants to empty the lake. The sierra club and other supporters have two main arguments in which they base their claim. (“Glen”) One is the saving of an ecosystem that is dying because of the filling of Glen Canyon; another is the loss of the beauty of the canyon and other sites of archeological and cultural importance.

The ecological claim is one that does not embrace any changes. We are currently in a changing world, including the Glen Canyon area. It is true that some species of fish are not surviving because of changing water temperatures in the area, but then there are others that are surviving and growing in population. With the changing of the water temperatures at the base of the damn, and other damns along the Colorado, the trout population in the area has been growing, along with the size of the fish that are in the river.

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