Ursula Kazarian

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Publication Date

Winter 2009


The U.S. Southwest currently faces a water crisis that experts have projected will only get worse, due to regional effects of climate change. Nevada, the state with the fewest guaranteed water rights to the Colorado River, has experienced unprecedented population growth in Las Vegas amidst an equally unprecedented economic boom over the past few decades. While its economy may currently be languishing, population forecasts still project a significant increase in demand in the next several decades, even as water sources are projected to diminish and even disappear. This article examines the current legislative and policy responses to climate change projections in the state of Nevada, and particularly the Las Vegas metropolitan area, concluding that such responses are in urgent need of development and expansion.