Opinion: Is the Colorado River really in crisis if we’re still growing cotton in Arizona?

I find it amazing that we continue to talk about the crisis on the Colorado River when, for example, there is still 165,000 acres of cotton grown in Arizona.

When we talk about protecting agriculture, it should mean protecting adaptable food production. Not unsustainable investments, public or private. More deep reporting on where the water is used causing the “crisis” is sorely needed.

The Colorado River is one of the most variable watersheds IN THE WORLD year-to-year, decade-to-decade, and is being exacerbated by climate change. Sustainability will never come from our trying to bend it to consistency, but in our ability to deal with its inconsistencies.

Kevin McBride is the former manager of the Upper Yampa Water Conservancy District in Steamboat Springs, Colo., and sits on the board of Water Education Colorado.

Independent, non-partisan journalism costs money. Please support Fresh Water News by making a donation now.

Donate