Editor, Casa Grande Dispatch:
This is a commentary and addendum to Dick Powell’s editorial column from Oct. 31 in the Dispatch. His main thesis was: 1) The Lower Mississippi Basin suffers from perennial flooding at great national expense. 2) The Lower Colorado Basin suffers from perennial drought at great national expense.
Both Brenda Burman (U.S. Bureau of Reclamation commissioner) and David Bernhardt (secretary of the Interior) were in Las Vegas several months ago speaking to the issues surrounding the Colorado’s problems with insufficient water and falling levels at both Lake Mead and Lake Powell. Her recommendation: Follow, or exceed, federal guidelines for water usage in the Southwest and “Let’s hope it rains (presumably in western Wyoming).” This is incompetent and worthless rhetoric.
Dick Powell is right. What is needed is a bold solution. Run closed, contained pipelines from Davenport, Iowa (on the Mississippi) and Lake Oahe (on the Missouri), pumping to achieve the 6500-foot elevation gain from Davenport, over the Continental Divide in western Wyoming, placing the water in Flaming Gorge Reservoir. Two or three pipelines of this type could transfer roughly 20 to 30 million cubic feet per day (24 hours). From there, the water would flow down the Green/Colorado system into Lakes Powell and Mead.
The current administration is committed to “Making America Great.” Now is the time for action. Let’s build the needed infrastructure. Powell goes on to say that $19 billion was spent last year in remediating damage on the Lower Mississippi. The money is there to build these projects. All that is required is the willpower.
Bruce L. Kile