Page 10


Page 10
Water from the Colorado River
Is Part Of,8
Full text
State engineering records reveal that Southern California now actually is using 170,000,000 gallons of water each day MORE than Man or Nature is replacing. This means that, in addition to the annual rainfall, this section is depleting its underground water reserves at the rate of 170 million gallons a day. At this rate, it is obvious, the rapidly diminishing underground reserves soon will be exhausted. Because it happened to experience a more rapid growth than other sections, Los Angeles reached the limit of its local water sources twenty years ago. This city has maintained uninterrupted growth and industrial expansion, thus far, by importing water from Owens River through an aqueduct 250 miles long. It is now carrying forward additional water development works in Owens Valley and the Mono Basin designed to meet its water needs pending the construction of the Metropolitan Aqueduct from the Colorado River. It is significant to note that more than 90 per cent of the water being used this year by Southern California, including the Los Angeles-Owens River supply, is being pumped from underground water reserves. These reserves rapidly are dropping. A few years ago there was an artesian basin in this region totaling 315 square miles in area. Today artesian wells practically have disappeared. In 162 square miles along the Coast, water is now being pumped from depths below sea level. Beneath more than 40 square miles, salt water from the ocean has penetrated and ruined the fresh water basins and caused the abandonment of wells. This encroachment continues and is an ever-present menace wherever water is being withdrawn from depths below sea level. It is acutely evident that every practicable and feasible form of water conservation must be practiced in Southern California in order to tide over the next eight or ten year period—during which time the Metropolitan Aqueduct from the Colorado River will be under construction. Page NINE

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