Arizona says it’s ready to lose a fifth of its Colorado River water share

Local News

FILE – In this Aug. 13, 2020 file photo a bathtub ring of light minerals delineates the high water mark on Lake Mead at the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, near Boulder City, Nev. The Bureau of Reclamation is forecasting first-ever water shortages because of falling levels at Lake Mead and says the reservoir could drop so low that it might not be able to generate electricity at Hoover Dam. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Water officials in Arizona say they are prepared to lose about one-fifth of the water the state gets from the Colorado River in what could be the first mandated cut.

The federal government recently projected the first-ever shortage of river water that supplies millions of people in the U.S. West and Mexico.

Arizona stands to lose more than any other state in the Colorado River basin.

That’s because Arizona agreed long ago to be the first in line for cuts in exchange for funding a canal system to deliver the water to the state’s major metropolitan areas.

The Arizona Department of Water Resources and the Central Arizona Project are expected to expand on the situation in a public presentation Thursday.

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