The plan to siphon-off water from Northern Nevada counties still has a chance to go forward. A judge must rule on the permits for the plan to create a pipeline to bring water to Las Vegas. But the north is not going to give up without a fight.More>>
The state engineer will rule on a plan to pump water from rural Nevada to Las Vegas. But some of the nation's foremost experts on water issues are weighing in on the pros and cons of similar water transfers. More>>
Rural residents oppose the southern Nevada water grab because they worry about the environmental effects, but others oppose because they say there are better ways to get the job done. I-Team's George Knapp takes a closer look. Read on to find out what rural residents and bloggers are saying.More>>
Las Vegas has money and political power, but the rural residents think they have the truth on their side to thwart a water grab proposal by southern Nevada. I-Team's George Knapp takes a closer look. Read on to find out what bloggers are saying.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:36 PM EDT2013-05-23 23:36:46 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- Air Force pilot Scott Powell returned home three weeks early from a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan, surprising his children at school. Two hours after landing in Las Vegas, Maj. PowellMore>>
Air Force pilot Scott Powell returned home three weeks early from a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan, surprising his children at school.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:57 PM EDT2013-05-24 02:57:30 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- A pedestrian was critically injured Thursday after being hit by a car about 6 p.m. at Maryland Parkway and Sahara Avenue, Metro Police said. The pedestrian, who was taken to a hospital,More>>
A pedestrian was injured Thursday after being hit by a car about 6 p.m. at Maryland Parkway and Sahara Avenue, Metro Police said.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:43 PM EDT2013-05-24 02:43:31 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The dream of attending college came true for more than 400 Clark County students Thursday as they were awarded nearly $1 million in scholarships. Scholarships were given to 440 students thanksMore>>
The dream of attending college came true for more than 400 Clark County students Thursday as they were awarded nearly $1 million in scholarships.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:17 PM EDT2013-05-24 01:17:16 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- A North Las Vegas aerospace company is preparing to boldly go where few have gone before -- a public-private partnership with NASA that could be the start of the next space race. Nevada'sMore>>
A North Las Vegas aerospace company is preparing to boldly go where few have gone before -- a public-private partnership with NASA that could be the start of the next space race.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:05 PM EDT2013-05-24 01:05:26 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- One of the biggest killers of children in the state isn't the heat, but pools. Drowning is the third leading cause of death among children and officials are urging parents to be on high-alertMore>>
Drowning is the third leading cause of death among children and officials are urging parents to be on high-alert this summer near swimming poolsMore>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:44 PM EDT2013-05-23 23:44:40 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- An independent review of a state-run mental health hospital gave high marks for patient satisfaction, but said options for people needing mental health care are limited. The review was orderedMore>>
An independent review of a state-run mental health hospital gave high marks for patient satisfaction, but said options for people needing mental health care are limited.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:06 PM EDT2013-05-23 23:06:34 GMT
CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) -- Nevada is one step closer to giving voters another chance to allow same-sex marriage in the Silver State. The Assembly voted 27-14 Thursday in favor of SJR13 which repeals languageMore>>
Nevada is one step closer to giving voters another chance to allow same-sex marriage in the Silver State.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 6:58 PM EDT2013-05-23 22:58:38 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The woman found dead in her home earlier in the week has been identified as 75-year-old Jean Main, according to the Clark County Coroner's Office. Main died from a gunshot wound to the head,More>>
Metro Police have released a photo of the purse that belonged to a 75-year-old woman who was found shot to death in her northwest home.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 6:27 PM EDT2013-05-23 22:27:35 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- As the weather heats up, officials have a life-and-death warning. Eleven Nevadan children have died over the last 15 years while being trapped in a hot car. Even with the window cracked,More>>
As the weather heats up, officials have a life-and-death warning. Eleven Nevadan children have died over the last 15 years while being trapped in a hot car.More>>
The results of a multi-million dollar federal study of Nevada's groundwater will be released in a few weeks, and the stakes for our state couldn't be higher.
The study is examining groundwater resources in rural Nevada and Utah, information that could help determine how much water Las Vegas can siphon from those areas. The Eyewitness News I-Team has an exclusive interview with one of the chief scientists involved in the study.
The Southern Nevada Water Authority hopes to suck billions of gallons of water every year from under fragile valleys in rural Nevada and Utah, funneling that water to a thirsty and growing Las Vegas. The proposed system of pumps and pipelines will cost billions of dollars, so, is there enough water available to justify the effort?
Alan Welch with the U.S. Geological Survey said, "We report facts. We don't make judgement calls or try to set any policy whatsoever."
You won't get hydrologist Alan Welch to answer a loaded question like that one. Nor will he even speculate what the effects of groundwater pumping might be on the delicate ecology of White Pine County or western Utah.
Welch's employer, the U.S. Geological Survey, was tasked by Congress with a comprehensive study of the hydrology of the Great Basin, perhaps the most intense study ever of water resources in the region. USGS and Nevada's Desert Research Institute were given $6 million to collect raw data about how much water is under the desert and whether water in one underground basin is connected to water in others.
The collection phase is over, Welch says. Results will be made public June 1, and no one will get to see the information until then, not even the state engineer who will decide how much water Las Vegas can grab from the rurals. The study, known by the acronym BARCASS, will not make recommendations one way or another. Instead, it will lay the groundwork.
"The next step would be make a practice groundwater flow model," said Welch. "A computer model would describe the flow within the entire area, and then try to put on that some proposed pumping and see what the reaction would be. If someone said, we're going to extract water from some part of the study area, what would the impact be? We don't discuss impacts."
But you can bet other parties will put the raw data to use. Already, some opponents of the water grab have alleged the BARCASS study is rigged to favor the pipeline plan. They worry that like any other statistics, those generated by the Great Basin study can be manipulated. Welch says the USGS hasn't noticed any political pressure, although there certainly have been a few curious phone calls as the end of the study draws near.
"There seems to be... well, there is a lot of interest for a variety of different reasons," said Welch.
Nevada's state engineer reportedly will not use information from the federal water study in making his decision about the so-called rural water "grab." That decision could come at any time.
In a related story, the Progressive Leadership Alliance plans to unveil its own survey, exploring how local people feel about our area's explosive growth, an issue directly related to the pipeline plan.