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The Great Basin Water Network (GBWN) protects the water resources of the Great Basin for current and future residents. Read our 40 questions and answers about the Las Vegas Water Grab Las Vegas Water Grab Rejected by Nevada Supreme Court Press Releases, GWBN Newsletters & Other Documents

In The News — Below are press stories about the Southern Nevada Water Authority's "water grab" in Nevada and Utah as well as other "mega" water projects that threaten the Great Basin and/or the Colorado River system. [Note: Stories open in new browser window]

08/ 2018 — Water Grab Opponents Declare Victory — Nevada State Engineer Rejects SNWA’s Water Applications — GBWN

September 21, 2018 —[Editorial] In our opinion: Should Las Vegas pump water it doesn't own? — Desert News

September 21, 2018 — Carson City – Today on the radio edition of the Nevada Capital News, we chat with a conversation with Great Basin Water Network spokesperson Howard Watts about the petition for judicial review filed yesterday in Nevada’s Seventh Judicial District Court in Ely. The petition, led by White Pine County and Great Basin Water Network, appeals the Nevada State Engineer’s August 17 Ruling on the Southern Nevada Water Authority’s water rights applications for the pipeline — knvc.org

September 20, 2018 — Federal agency declines to handle all permitting for Lake Powell Pipeline — The federal agency that had been handling the permitting process for the Lake Powell Pipeline announced Thursday it doesn't have jurisdiction to handle the entire project on its own. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission submitted an order indicating it would only consider permitting for the hydroelectric facilities proposed for the project, and not the remaining 89 miles of connecting water delivery pipelines, although it would continue as the lead agency in charge of environmental analysis. Environmental organizations, taxpayer watchdog groups and others opposed to the project celebrated the decision, arguing it could potentially set back the permitting process and require better scrutiny of the project plans

September 19, 2018 — Appeals pour in over ruling against Las Vegas pipe water plan — The appeals are piling up over a recent state decision blocking the Southern Nevada Water Authority’s plans to pipe groundwater from Eastern Nevada. Four days after water authority board members approved a court challenge of State Engineer Jason King’s Aug. 17 ruling, opponents of the controversial pipeline project launched an appeal of their own targeting a specific part of last month’s decision — Las Vegas Review Journal [More Informtion]

September 18, 2018 — Pipeline opponents to SNWA: See you in court — Less than a week after the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) board voted unanimouslyto appeal a recent ruling by the state engineer that denied the authority water rights for its groundwater pumping and pipeline project, opponents are taking the matter back to court. Monday, a broad coalition of 59 organizations and individuals opposed to the SNWA project filed a petition for judicial review in Nevada’s Seventh Judicial District Court in Ely. Nevada State Engineer Jason King previously denied SNWA’s water rights applications before appealing his own decision, claiming his office was prevented from granting the water authority’s permits due to constraints by previous court requirements – nevadacurrent.com[More Informtion] [More Coverage — Elynews.com]

September 18, 2018 — Utah groups want to tank Nevada's groundwater pumping plan — SALT LAKE CITY — A broad coalition of groups say a judge should tank a mitigation and monitoring plan associated with Nevada's efforts to pump groundwater in the arid desert next to Utah. A petition, led by Nevada's White Pine County and the Great Basin Water Network, was filed Monday in Nevada's 7th District Court objecting to the "3M" plan approved in State Engineer Jason King's August ruling — www.ksl.com

September 14, 2018 — Can We Operate the Colorado River Differently Amid Climate Change? — THE COLORADO RIVER watershed faces increasing challenges from chronic water shortage. And it appears increasingly likely this is a new permanent condition, not an episodic drought. As a result, the many reservoirs built in the watershed – large and small – may have to be operated differently to optimize new precipitation patterns and snowmelt routines. That is a complicated problem, because they are all operated by different entities, with different water demands and unique environmental and flood-control concerns. But if the 40 million people who depend on the Colorado River are to continue thriving, something’s got to be done. Jack Schmidt, a professor of watershed sciences at Utah State University, is about to start a large new research project . . . newsdeeply.com

September 13, 2018 — I-Team: SNWA head back to court to keep multi-billion dollar water siphoning project alive — LAS VEGAS - Southern Nevada water agencies are headed back to court to fight to keep a multi-billion dollar water project alive. During a special meeting Thursday, Southern Nevada Water Authority board members voted to appeal a recent decision by the state engineer which temporarily slammed the door on a controversial plan to siphon groundwater from rural Nevada — lasvegasnow.com [More Coverage — thenevadaindependent.com] [Read/Download — SNWA's Petition For Judicial Review]

September 13, 2018 — Crisis at Lake Powell Looms Large as Long-Term Drought Reaches Upstream — newsdeeply.com

September 11, 2018 — Utah copes with drying streams, dying animals as drought tightens its grip — with no relief in sight — sltrib.com

September 11, 2018 — Southerner Sisolak comes out against Vegas plan to import rural water — Gubernatorial contender Steve Sisolak has come out against a plan pushed for decades by Southern Nevada interests to pump water from the rural counties to accommodate Las Vegas needs. Sisolak, a Democrat, took the position while answering water policy questions that The Nevada Independent posed to both candidates for governor.

The campaign for Republican gubernatorial candidate Adam Laxalt, who currently serves as the state’s attorney general, did not reply to the questions about water. The Nevada Independent sent numerous emails to a spokesman and two top campaign operatives in the last two weeks thenevadaindependent.com

September 10, 2018 — Southern Nevada Water Authority expected to appeal pipeline plan ruling — It looks like the Southern Nevada Water Authority won’t be taking no for an answer. The authority board will hold a rare special meeting Thursday to launch an appeal of the most recent state ruling against the agency’s plans to pipe groundwater to Las Vegas from across eastern Nevada — Las Vegas Review Journal

September 07, 2018 — 'It's more of the same:' As warming trend continues in Nevada, Las Vegas breaks record for summer temperature — For the third year in a row, Las Vegas posted record summer temperatures, a trend that climate scientists expect to continue into the future with implications for public health, energy use and water supply in the most arid state — thenevadaindependent.com

September 06, 2018 — Grab is dead in the water — A recent crucial regulatory decision favored the good guys in Nevada’s interminable water wars. State Engineer Jason King ruled against the plan by the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) to import groundwater through a 300-mile pipeline in Eastern Nevada to feed the rapacious thirst of Las Vegas. King’s decision to deny all water rights applications for the water grab was hailed as a tremendous victory for the odd folks coalition of activists, a coalition featuring progressive conservationists, conservative ranchers and farmers, tribal leaders and their members, rural county commissioners and people of all political stripes who recreate in the pristine desert and range of Eastern Nevada, who have worked since 1989 to thwart the water thieves — newsreview.com

September 04, 218 — Colorado River Flows Drop By 15 Percent Over Last 100 Years — kunc.org

August 29, 2018 — [Editorial — Nevada Appeal] Abby Johnson: Las Vegas Water Grab not dead yet — What about the water? Today, one in five of Nevada's 256 water basins are overappropriated, meaning that there are more water rights approved than there is water available. Earlier this month, opponents of the Southern Nevada groundwater development project — known as the Las Vegas Water Grab — celebrated an unprecedented victory. After 12 years of hearings and legal appeals, the State Engineer finally denied Southern Nevada Water Authority's water applications in four key valleys in eastern Nevada . . . The Nevada Appeal   Print PDF

August 29, 2018 — IndyMatters: SNWA chief talks Colorado River, pipeline, need for changes to Nevada water law — The leader of Las Vegas’s powerful water authority said the time has come for the Legislature to make changes to Nevada water law, an idea that will likely get pushback from many water users, during a 50-minute interview on The Nevada Independent’s podcast, IndyMatters. In the wide-ranging interview, John Entsminger, general manager of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, addressed concerns over a Colorado River shortage and the agency’s continued push for a pipeline project to pump large amounts of groundwater from Eastern Nevada to Las Vegas — thenevadaindependent.com

August 28, 2018 — At water-starved Lake Mead and Lake Powell, 'the crisis is already real,' scientists say — With Lake Mead dropping to levels that could trigger water cutbacks in less than two years, there's been a lot of talk lately about negotiating a deal to keep the reservoir from falling even further. But in a new report, scientists say the situation is just as worrisome upstream at Lake Powell. The declines there during the past 18 years, they say, also reflect the Colorado River's worsening "structural deficit." — azcentral.com

August 24, 2018 — [Editorial — BY THOMAS MITCHELL] We suggest an ally in the fight against the water grab — The three-decade legal wrangle over whether Clark County will ever be allowed to tap groundwater from White Pine, Lincoln and Nye counties has reached another milestone, but may be far from over. Jason King, state engineer for the Nevada Division of Water Resources (NDWR), issued a 111-page ruling denying the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) request for water permits . . . We suggest that the opponents seek to form a partnership in their fight against this water grab with another party who would be damaged by this project — the SNWA’s customers — elynews.com
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August 24, 2018 —
Coalition declares victory over pipeline proposal — A broad coalition of Nevadans committed to protecting the state’s water resources are declaring victory in their opposition to the SNWA groundwater pipeline. They applaud a ruling by the Nevada State Engineer denying all water rights applications for the project — elynews.com

Nevada State Engineer Jason King August 23, 2018 — The Las Vegas pipeline is dead. The Las Vegas pipeline is alive — Even when the Las Vegas pipeline is dead, the Las Vegas pipeline is alive. On Friday last week, Nevada’s top water regulator dropped a 111-page ruling widely interpreted as the final blow to Las Vegas’ vexed campaign to pump groundwater from Eastern Nevada and pipe it to the state’s growing urban center — the country’s driest city — about 250 miles away. The ruling denied the Southern Nevada Water Authority the right to pump billions of gallons of water from rural Nevada aquifers, transport it down south and connect it to Las Vegas taps — thenevadaindependent.com

Howard Watts August, 2018 — Conservationists hail ruling against “water grab” — A ruling Friday could mark the end of a three-decade fight over the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) plan to pump groundwater from eastern Nevada aquifers to Las Vegas, according to critics of the “water grab.” But the state engineer promised that water permit denials issued by the Nevada Division of Water Resources (NDWR) Friday will be appealed. “In my opinion, it is a death knell for the proposed project,” said Howard Watts, a spokesman for the Great Basin Water Network. “I think that it is unlikely that SNWA will prevail in an appeal,” said Watts, a Las Vegas Democrat who is running for the Nevada Assembly — nevadacurrent.com

August 17, 2018 — I-Team: State engineer rules against SNWA rural water pipeline — lasvegasnow.com

August 17, 2018 — Nevada's top water regulator denies SNWA permits, will appeal the methodology of own decision — Ruling in a closely-watched case, Nevada’s top water regulator denied the Southern Nevada Water Authority permits for a controversial project to pump groundwater 250 miles from Eastern Nevada to Las Vegas Friday afternoon. But the decision is far from finalized and will likely go before a judge — thenevadaindependent.com

August 17, 2018 — Nevada Water Chief Rejects Big Vegas Pipeline Pumping Plan — LAS VEGAS — Long-fought plans for Las Vegas to pump and pipe drinking water from arid valleys just west of the Utah state line were dealt a severe blow Friday with a ruling from Nevada's top state water official — By The Associated Press

All 2018 News Stories

All 2017 News Stories

All 2016 News Stories


   GBWN Video Files Baker Family Ranches Video The Consequences...Transporting Snake Valley Water to Satisfy a Thirsty Las Vegas: An Eastern Nevada Rancher's Story is a virtual water tour of Snake Valley. Baker Family Ranches has produced the DVD to help people understand that there is not enough water in Snake Valley to justify the Southern


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