– by Amy Brunvand
In December the State of Utah asked federal regulators for approval to build the proposed Lake Powell Pipeline project, a massive water diversion from the Colorado River that would be piped to Saint George, Utah. The State of Utah currently has no repayment plan for the $3.2 billion project. Economists estimate that water rates in Washington County would need to increase by a whopping 500% in order to pay back the cost—that’s $781 per year for the next 50 years from every person in Washington County.
The Utah Rivers Council says there are better alternatives to building this expensive water boondoggle: eliminating property tax subsidies for water, converting water formerly used by agriculture to municipal uses and more aggressive water conservation efforts.
More January 2016 Environews: