Water in the West

We are planning to move to the Phoenix area. With climate change, water, or lack thereof, has been in the news. I decided to read Cadillac Desert from 1986 for some background. The story is a history of water in the west. It is a story mostly of corruption and squander. But the upshot is there is plenty of water in the west, at least for things like drinking and washing. The biggest use is agriculture, with cattle farming taking the lions share. This is more for the growing of crops to feed cattle, which uses more of less half of the water in the Colorado River. It needs to be pointed out that this is a huge subsidy and there are other, much better, places to raise cattle. Like anywhere that isn’t a desert.

The New York Times has an article today that gives the numbers. The chart in the article says it all.