25 Years of Drought: Colorado State University Investigates Effects on the Colorado River

The Colorado River Basin has been in a drought since 2000 and the lack of rain has taken its toll. Colorado State University researchers discovered 81 percent water reduction of Colorado River’s flow, affected by high temperatures and low precipitation. Nearly forty million people rely on the Colorado River for water and the drought has reduced the river by at least .5 million acre-feet – the amount of water used by two million people in one year.

This study is the first of its kind quantifying the effects of temperatures and precipitation, and the team hopes it will provide water managers with insight on weather patterns to prepare for future impact and better regulate water use across the region.

University of Colorado collected 25 years of data to determine the effect of the river’s flow – read about their climate model here.

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