Wednesday February 1, 2023

Merced Sun-Star

Exposed to the beating sun and hot dry air, more than 10% of the water carried by the Colorado River evaporates, leaks or spills as the 1,450-mile (2,334-kilometer) powerhouse of the West flows through the region’s dams, reservoirs and open-air canals.

For decades, key stewards of the river have ignored the massive water loss, instead allocating Arizona, California, Nevada and Mexico their share of the river without subtracting what’s evaporated.

But the 10% can no longer be ignored, hydrologists, state officials and other western water experts say.

The West’s multi-decade drought has sent water levels in key reservoirs along the river to unprecedented lows. Officials from Nevada and Arizona say that they, together with California,

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