Emerging reports state that Ogallala Aquiver is drying up pretty fast while Lake Mead has reached its lowest level in history. There is a possibility that the water level will most likely go down in the unforeseeable future.
However, in what appears to be water wars, profiteers are entering the market, but without any legal provision that prevents them from doing so.
Early this week, Las Vegas Review Journal reported that Lake Mead has gone down to the lowest level since 1937, and this low level breaks the record of the low levels which were experienced in 2010. This time around, the lake is expected to continue shrinking.
A scientist at the USDA’s Agricultural-Research Service in Lubbock, Texas said” we are headed for a brick wall at about one hundred miles per hour”.”And really, the effects of climate change are being felt along the way”.
While making this statement, Mahan was no doubt referring to Ogallala Aquiver which covers much of Texas as well as across millions of acres of productive agricultural land. “The supply of food in the United States depends on that acquiver,”said Mahan.
Most of Nevada, Texas, Arizona and the state of Oklahoma have experienced extreme drought like never before. The drying up of Lake Mead affects about 40 million people directly both in the United States and Mexico.
California is the bread basket of America and this is where water barons are cashing in on water by selling an acre foot at about $2,200.
This story is also replicated in Texas where there are some groups that are profiteering from the drought that is afflicting some states. In Texas, the right to access to water or the right to capture water depends on whether it’s surface water or ground water.
Generally, groundwater in Texas belongs to the owner of the land and governed by what is known as the rule of capture. This is the rule that allows land owners exclusive rights to capture the water that is located under their water.
According to Mark Crawford, the land owner doesn’t own the water, but has all the rights to pump and use the water no matter the effect which this pumping has on adjacent wells.
On the other hand, surface water is owned by the state of Texas and can only be used by the owner of the land when permission has been obtained from the state. In an article posted in Huffington Post this week, some ranch owners in Texas have sold water
“Fresh portable water is a life in itself and any living thing needs more water than food, but with extreme shortages in some parts of the United States, water profiteers will always be looking for a way to make a killing,” says Brian.