Local NewsDrought Crisis


Las Vegas weighs tying growth to conservation amid drought

Lake Mead water level_1.JPG
Posted at 11:35 PM, Jun 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-18 12:00:15-04

CARSON CITY (AP) — Cities in the U.S. West are preparing for considerable growth in the coming decades despite a historic drought and shrinking water supplies.

From Phoenix to Boise, officials are working to ensure they have the resources, infrastructure and housing supply to meet growth projections while balancing conservation.

Their efforts are constrained by the fact that some cities are surrounded by federal land.

U.S. Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada wants to remedy the issue around Las Vegas by strengthening protections for some public lands while selling others to commercial and residential developers.

Opponents argue that approving these kinds of "swaps" isn't sustainable, particularly in areas that rely on a shrinking water supply.