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Surplus Water to Help California's Drought


Last updated 9/24/2015 at 2:05pm

A new water deal would bring 150,000 acre-feet of surplus water to an arid Southern California. The Metropolitan Water District, an LA-based water agency which supplies public utilities to Southern California, received the OK from the Southern Nevada Water Authority for the water supply. Now the district will vote on the deal next week.

The $45-million deal is called water-banking because the selling agency is ‘storing’ the water elsewhere; a percent of it would evaporate otherwise, and it would receive money through the transaction. The Nevada Water Authority would then be allowed to buy it back and ensure its own supplies in future years.

Southern California and Nevada Water Authority have done more than a dozen similar deals over the past ten years. However, this deal is for twice the amount of water as before.

The Metropolitan Water District will save this shared water for when the Drought depletes California’s reservoirs. The surplus water would come from Lake Mead, a big water reservoir in the Colorado River behind Hoover Dam. The water district operate its own pumps at the lake.

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