Drought causes largest US reservoir to reach lowest level since 1930s

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy Correspondent

(Worthy News) – An increasingly severe drought across the Southwestern has resulted in Lake Mead, America’s largest reservoir, reaching its lowest level of water since the 1930s on Wednesday, Axios reports. The Southwest is currently suffering the most severe and widespread drought of this century.

Located on the border between and Colorado, Lake Mead provides water for agriculture and human consumption to seven states, and also generates electricity at the Hoover Dam, Axios said. The Hoover Dam is already operating below capacity, and its productivity level may be reduced even further as summer progresses.

The intensifying drought is expected to continue through the summer, putting pressure on power supplies and creating optimal conditions for , Axios reports. Arizona has already seen large fires, and is bracing itself for fires two months earlier than usual.

On Thursday the Bureau of Reclamation said Lake Mead’s hourly water levels had fallen below 1,071.48 feet, Axios said. The lake’s record low level is likely to trigger a water shortage declaration which would result in water restrictions in several states. A water shortage edict could impact farming in the region, as well affect residents in major cities like .

“By elevating temperatures and altering weather patterns, human-driven climate change is making the drought both more likely to occur and more severe,” Axios noted. A water shortage declaration will be made if Lake Mead’s level of water is projected to remain below 1,075 feet at the beginning of next year.

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