Page 132


Page 132
Colorado River problem
Is Part Of,8
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KELLY ON THE COLORADO RIVER PROBLEM 437 project proposed has the physical capacity for appropriating and using more water than the Compact allots to the Lower Basin. Its advocates are not willing to curtail the capacity, and their proposals for legislative limitation have been rejected by the representatives of the upper States. Consequently, in the absence of the Compact the prospects of a compromise between advocates of the Boulder Canyon Project and the upper State interests do not look promising. It seems highly desirable to make the most of this probable delay by completing the field investigations needed and by negotiating a treaty with Mexico. It is regrettable that the beginning of development on the Colorado should face such a delay, and the writer has given much thought to ways and means of avoiding it. It would seem that the upper States would have no logical ground for objection to any project that is designed and carried out on plans that would prevent the appropriation and use of more water than is allotted to the Lower Basin by the Compact. The Mohave Valley site was suggested as a flood-protection project on this basis. Perhaps the Dewey, combined with some other up-stream reservoir, would serve as well. To date, however, the interests needing flood protection have shown no disposition to look for any solution other than Boulder Canyon. The Flaming Gorge and Diamond Creek projects are both desirable. Neither will conflict in any way with the terms of the proposed Compact. Although they will not, in themselves, greatly benefit the Lower Basin, they constitute a first step toward the ultimate complete development of the river. Both are authorized under preliminary permits issued by the Federal Power Commission; they will ask for licenses to begin construction in the near future. It is some time since the Federal Power Commission has given these projects consideration, and the writer cannot predict what action it will take, but all things considered, it appears that they offer perhaps the most favorable opportunity for a start on developing the Colorado.

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