Drought Imperils Arizona Hydropower Plant Operations

Ongoing dry weather in the western U.S. conducive to wildfires burning in New Mexico and Arizona has also helped drop the waters of Lake Powell to a level approaching the minimum needed to operate the Glen Canyon Dam hydroelectric power plant.

“This year the Colorado River Basin has experienced extremely variable conditions with a record high snowpack one month, followed by weeks without snow,” David Palumbo, acting commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, said in a statement. “This variable hydrology and a warmer, drier west have drastically impacted our operations and we are faced with the urgent need to manage in the moment.”