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Using Columbia River water to alleviate S.W. America's water shortages.

The Colorado River supplies much water for irrigation, drinking and recreation to Arizona, Nevada, California and Mexico. That is, if any is left over for Mexico; usually, nothing is. In N.W. America, the Columbia river, with 20X the flow of the Colorado, empties into the Pacific ocean between Washington and Oregon. I say put a pipe at the mouth of the Columbia, capture about 1/20th of it, and run it offshore down the Pacific coast. Bring it ashore in San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego. Then, re-route the water that comes to these cities from up in the Sierra mountains to flow East instead of West, and give that water to the farms and cities that now depend on California's allotment of Colorado River water.

Once that water is flowing and the needs of those communities and farms are met, then give California's share of the Colorado to Arizona, Nevada and Mexico.

Running the pipe off the coast will solve several problems; there will be minimal "nimby" arguments and fights over eminent domain. Since the water is taken at the Columbia's mouth, those upstream can't complain that "their" water was being stolen, which has been a problem in the past. Lastly, the pipeline could prove to be an artificial reef refuge for fish and improve the sport fishing industries on the coast. Better relations and opportunities for Mexico, too, with the restoration of their river flow.

What do you think?

  • Apr 11 2012: Eric, why don't you tag this idea under some of the latest talks and see if someone with know how on this issue can give you some input???

    Wish I knew about this a little more to give you some solid feedback.