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The US is experiencing its worst drought in over 50 years. It highlights the glaring problems that plague the US water supply and will only get worse as the years draw on, and yet it has almost been completely ignored by politicians.
Gerald Galloway, a civil engineer, hydrology expert, and former president of the American Water Resources Association, said that for many years the nation has employed an ad hoc system for dealing with water issues. “The nation lacks a coherent approach to dealing with water. Everyone is just hoping it will get better. Hope is not a method.”
Water in the US lacks an overreaching authority which can look at the broad picture and deal with the mounting crisis. Instead it is governed by a mismatch of federal agencies, state, tribal, and private interests, and all with overlapping jurisdictions of authority and power, which generally result in constant debate, and little action.
Galloway admitted that the problem is that “no one has a solution they are willing to sell. It's so sensitive. There are so many people on either side. Water is filled with interest groups.”
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One of the major sticking points that must be addressed is the volume of water used in energy production in the US. It is estimated that half of the fresh water in the entire nation is used in energy production, especially in hydraulic fracturing.
Wendy Wilson, the director of rivers, energy and climate for the River Network, has commented that “the conflicts between water supply and electricity generation are becoming more and more acute. We're seeing more and more flash points.”
By. Charles Kennedy of Oilprice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com