Climate change and increasing water demands are threatening to dry up rivers and lakes.
A healthy river provides clean drinking water, replenishes groundwater supplies, supports abundant fish and wildlife, and offers world-class recreational opportunities that boost local economies. We need innovative approaches to keep water in rivers and lakes. Old approaches, like lengthy pipelines, costly infrastructure projects, and unregulated water use got us where we are today, with demand outpacing supply and rivers getting hammered.
Reduced water levels in rivers and lakes can cause:
- A loss of wetlands, which are essential ecosystems supporting clean water, flood mitigation and habitat;
- The spread of algae blooms and invasive species, such as tamarisk and predator fish;
- Decline in the abundance of native fish and wildlife;
- Reduced recreational opportunities and the local and state economies they support; and
- Increased water pollution and costs of treatment.