In 2021 Lake Mead’s water levels dropped to their lowest point ever! Now the water supply is once again falling toward deadpool status. Deadpool status describes the point at which water drops below a dam’s lowest intake valve, and when the dam’s turbines will no longer be able to generate power.
Lake Mead’s water level has dropped around 170 feet since 2000, exposing huge swaths of dry lakebed. At the lake’s southwestern Boulder Beach, shorelines have retreated so far that roads built along the water’s edge abruptly end several hundred yards from the water line. Lake Mead’s quickly receding water line has exposed decades old secrets, including multiple bodies, several shipwrecks, and even a plane crash.
Since 2000, the National Park Service has spent nearly $50 million relocating and extending boat launches and other amenities in an attempt to chase the falling water line. But even with these costly adjustments, the park has been forced to close all but one ramp.
“Dire forecasts have prompted the federal government to mandate water cuts for Nevada, Arizona and Mexico, with California expected to follow suit.”
Falling water levels threaten more than just recreation. Lake Mead provides water and electricity to the entire Vegas Valley. In fact, it supplies 2.5 million citizens 90% of their water! But less annual snow melt from the Colorado River is quickly drying it up. If the lake hits deadpool status, it will become unable to release water downstream and electricity production will slow to a halt.
For Vegas residents deadpool status would be a double whammy. Not only would it affect the valley’s supply of usable water, it would also impact electricity production. On the southwest edge of Lake Mead sits the massive Hoover Dam. The Hoover Dam’s towering turbines are capable of producing enough hydropower for about 1.3 million people annually! But without sufficient water supply, the turbines can only operate at half capacity. If the water level drops about 100 feet more, they will no longer be able to produce power, according to the Bureau of Reclamation.
Federal projections expect the reservoir’s water levels to continue plunging over the next two years. Dire forecasts have prompted the federal government to mandate water cuts for Nevada, Arizona and Mexico, with California expected to follow suit.
If state and local governments fail to curb water use, the US Department of the Interior is prepared to take decisive action, which may include limiting downstream water releases from the reservoir to prevent it from nearing dead pool levels.
How you can support Lake Mead
Switch to drought-friendly landscaping!
Approximately 60% of Southern Nevada’s water is used outdoors. This means it doesn’t earn return-flow credits and is counted against Vegas’s water allowance. A large percentage of this water gets wasted on landscape irrigation. But thanks to new water restrictions and government rebates, that number is quickly shrinking.
Landscape irrigation isn’t just harmful to Lake Mead, it’s also expensive. Water waste fines can range from $80 for the first violation to $5,120 for the fifth violation!
You can cut your water bill and avoid steep fines by switching to drought-friendly landscaping.
Why Turf is King!
When it comes to drought-friendly landscaping you have a couple options. The most popular solutions are artificial turf and hardscaping.
The key difference between artificial turf and hardscape in functionality. Yes, hardscaping can be beautiful to look at, but can it perform like a turf lawn?
No. Artificial turf offers functional space for entertainment and recreation. Because does anyone really want to play football or host a birthday party on rocks? No, thank you.
Turf is soft and forgiving, which is why so many of the world’s most popular sports use it as their go-to playing surface. In fact, over half of NFL teams play on artificial turf! That’s because turf minimizes the risk of injury by providing extra cushion to reduce strain on joints, muscles, and bones.
Artificial Turf Rebates in Your Area
Southern Nevada Water Authority’s is offering up to $3 per square foot of yard space to replace “useless grass” with desert-friendly landscaping! This rebate is part of the SNWA’s Water Smart Landscapes program, designed to minimize water waste from landscape irrigation.
The Southern Nevada Water Authority will accept artificial turf as a substitute for mulch, instead of rock or bark. To qualify, the turf you install will need to be permeable, allowing air and water to pass freely. Your project will also need to meet several other program conditions, including 50% plant coverage and low-flow irrigation.
For more information, including terms and requirements, view the program conditions.
Find the Best Turf for You!
Artificial Grass Liquidators wants to help find the best artificial grass for your project! Our specialists are ready to serve you.
AGL has locations all across the Vegas Valley. Our showrooms feature interactive displays that let visitors experience the Turf Life first hand. Stop by one of our showrooms to discover what artificial turf can do for you!
Can’t make it? We’re willing to ship free samples of our entire inventory to anywhere in the US