Water levels slightly rise at Lake Mead

By Pratham Dalal
Published: Friday, September 16, 2022 - 1:20pm
Updated: Friday, September 16, 2022 - 1:21pm

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Lake Mead barrels
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Barrels on the receding shoreline of Lake Mead.

Average water levels at Lake Mead rose by 4 feet during the month of September, according to the Bureau of Reclamation. Experts are attributing it to a heavy monsoon season in Arizona.

Orestes Morfin, a senior planning analyst at the Central Arizona Project, says not to get too excited with the high levels.

“The monsoon is important. It is a great thing to suppress demand to just generally put the finger on the scale sometimes in Lake Mead if we have a big year but I would caution against too much optimism," he said. 

Water levels rise with good snowfall near the Colorado River. However, for the third year in a row, experts say there will be unfavorable weather conditions.

“There are signs that this will be the third La Nina in a row and that is historically not good news for the headwaters area and the Colorado River," Morfin said.

La Nina systems tend to correlate with dry autumns, which affects the winter’s snowpack and how much runoff goes into the Colorado River. “Those are not the conditions that you want to see when you are in 22 year drought," Morfin said. 

Environment Water