page 22

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page 22
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http://digital.library.unlv.edu/u?/dig,8
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22 worth from $40,000,000 to $50,000,000 a year, and they are growing in value. Last year 28,000 ears of garden products went out of the valley. They included 15,000 cars of cantaloupes and 10,000 cars of lettuce. This year, 14,000 cars of lettuce are being shipped out of that valley, so that it shows that these valuable crops are increasing, and they are being supplemented by further costly development in orchards and vineyards, and the wealth that is in jeopardy there is constantly increasing, and the interests of the people that have created that wealth, of course, becomes more and more acute.That is not the whole story. The building of the Roosevelt Dam and the other supplementary storage works tends to restrict the volume of water coming down. The proposed building of the San Carlos Dam has the same effect. Up in the northern part of the watershed of this valley, the development has been slower because the returns from agriculture are not so great, but it is going on there, and no one can look at this question in a large way without feeling that if the beginning of this development is prolonged it may lead to a catastrophe to the people living in the Imperial Valley.I think those are the considerations that led us to desire early action in carrying out this development.Mr. SINNOTT. Was the navigation of the river any consideration at all?Doctor MEAD. No, sir.Mr. SINNOTT. It was not?Doctor MEAD. I do not think that anyone could claim that the river is a navigable stream. Whatever it may have been once, it would take a new kind of a boat that could find its way up that channel now. The river left the old channel.Mr. SINNOTT. But that was not a factor in the Secretary's consideration of the proposed measure?Doctor MEAD. NO, sir. I am giving you that main consideration.Now, there is another consideration that is important. There are two of the large cities of the arid region, and a good many smaller cities that lie outside of the watershed of this river, that depend upon it for the water that will be needed in their future growth. Denver is building a tunnel to tap the higher reaches of this stream. Los Angeles has voted $2,00,000 to begin the construction of a pipe line leading from the river to Los Angeles. If its growth continues, Los Angeles and other coast cities face the necessity of going to the river for a water supply indispensable to their growth.There is no other source from which an adequate supply of water can be obtained. The same is true of Denver.If this project could be started this year and carried on with all of the speed that is consistent with economy and safety, this work will not be finished and available before there will be widely varying and very important needs for a large part of the water that it makes available. I am speaking so far entirely of the protection and preservation of whatever exists, the cities that are built, the farms that are in cultivation, but if this were carried out it would make possible the extension of the irrigated area above the present canal in the Imperial Valley and would do what ought to be done--provide a water supply for the very valuable orchards of the Coachella Valley. That valley depends upon underground water supplies, on wells, and those wells have been failing--that is, the water

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