Rethinking the values of water

KJZZ radio asked Rhett Larson, Senior Research Fellow at the Kyl Center for Water Policy at Morrison Institute, about the 90-year-old Colorado River law that essentially forces states to waste water.

Larson, an Arizona State University Law Professor, said what makes the law of the river antiquated is that it assumes historical trends of the amount of water in the Colorado River.

Larson suggests if the law simply apportioned percentages of the stream flow, rather than apportioning amounts of water, states would share Colorado River water equally.

He notes that there are political obstacles to the states coming together on such a decision, but this is an issue rapidly climbing the list of priorities.

“We need to rethink what values of water really are,” said Larson. “If we rethink the value of leaving water in the riverbed, we move past the ethos that every drop must be put to an obvious productive economic use,” he continued, “and rethink what productive uses of water are and why they are productive if they are just left in the stream.”


LISTEN: Possible Solutions To The Outdated Colorado River Law That May Be Wasting Water

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