LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Adel Hagekhalil, General Manager of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, issues the following statement on the testimony of U.S. Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Camille Touton today before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on the severity of the Colorado River drought and the need for short- and long-term drought solutions throughout the West:
“Deteriorating conditions on the Colorado River represent the extraordinary pressure that historically dry conditions are placing on water resources across the state and the Southwest. Together with our partners on the river, we have invested billions of dollars to slow the decline of reservoirs in the Colorado River system. The accelerating drought now puts us at a turning point. We must do more to respond to the decades-long drought that continues to strain our infrastructure, causing storage levels in Lake Mead and Lake Powell to plummet, reducing the reliability of the river’s water supply and threatening the loss of power generation.We remain committed to working with the seven basin states, the federal government, tribal nations and Mexico to address this crisis and promote the long-term sustainability of this parta water source. which is vital to our communities, our farms and our environment.
“In Southern California, we are pushing our residents and businesses to reduce their water use and are seeking federal and state support for projects and programs that help us adapt to drought and climate change by investing in local sourcing, storage and increasing the flexibility of our water supply system to enable us to reduce our dependence on our imported water resources.
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a state-established cooperative that, together with its 26 cities and retail suppliers, provides water to 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and northern California to supplement local supplies and helps its members develop increased conservation, recycling, storage and resource management programs.