The worst drought to hit the U.S. since 2011 has farmers plowing down crops that have no chance of reaching maturity, and selling off cows that they can no longer provide adequate water for. While this is troubling enough, abnormally low water levels in lakes and rivers are setting off alarms in terms of something none of us can live without. Power. It takes water to generate electricity. Lots of it.
Power plants operate at extremely high temperatures. To prevent machinery meltdowns, water is used to regulate and offset the heat. Particularly in the summer months, millions of gallons per day are needed nationwide to keep the grids pumping power into homes and businesses.
A lack of rainfall coupled with consumers setting their thermostats to igloo temperatures due to the relentless heat waves that continue pounding the nation has already caused irreversible damage.
Hoover Dam is hydroelectric. As such, water is its lifeblood. It can’t generate so much as a spark without it. Its glass is half empty and there isn’t enough optimism to view it any other way. It’s running at half capacity and only spitting out 50% of what it’s capable of, and what it needs to produce to meet the high demand.
The two largest reservoirs in the country, Lale Mead and Lake Powell, along with the deep and wide Colorado River, are crucial components of the nation’s power grid.
Lake Mead juices up Hoover Dam that sends current to 1.3 million Americans in California, Nevada, and Arizona. Las Vegas alone can suck it dry if the water level isn’t constantly being replenished. Lake Powell ignites the home fires of the Glen Canyon Dam which generates roughly half as much power.
On the other hand, seven states rely on the Colorado River, and their futures aren’t bright enough to need shades. Four million acre-feet of water would submerge D.C. over 90 feet below the surface, and this is how much the river has already dried up.
The seven states are battling one another over which one has what rights to how much and how the water will be evenly distributed, and blah, blah, blah. Though pleaded with, the Biden administration has taken little action to break up the fight.
The administration has made token water usage cuts here and there, but outside of this, they’ve been sitting on the sidelines watching the states duke it out.
The drought isn’t confined to the west coast and it’s only a matter of a very short time before every state in the lower 48 starts suffering. Rhode Island and Massachusetts are already feeling an extreme sting and not one single state is without concern as water levels continue to recede at a rapid rate.
Rain dances aren’t going to send thunder clouds rolling in, and nothing can stop the unbearable heat from evaporating every last drop of what remains of America’s precious water supply.
We’re at the mercy of our country’s two reigning figures. God and Joe Biden. Our suggestion? You better start praying hard.