Groundwater grab

A plan to build a pipeline to carry groundwater from east-central Nevada and western Utah to Las Vegas is currently under review by the Bureau of Land Management. The agency will hold hearings in August and is accepting public comments through Oct. 11 on its Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the “Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) Clark, Lincoln and White Pine Counties Groundwater Development Projects.”

The proposed project would build 306 miles of buried water pipelines, as well as 323 miles of overhead power lines. Much of the DEIS involves the water authority’s application for groundwater rights.

Local group Great Basin Water Network, which has been fighting SNWA on the project for the past seven years, including in a courtroom win, has compiled a “Water Grab EIS Guide” to the 1,400 page document under review. The group says the project would put hundreds of springs, miles of streams, and thousands of acres of wetland and wildlife habitat at risk.

The BLM wrote in its overview of the project, “SNWA’s need for the project is to diversify its water resources to ensure it can continue to meet water supply obligations and meet projected future water demands.”

A public hearing on the DEIS will be held in Sparks on Aug. 18 at Sparks High School Gym, 820 15th St., from 3 p.m.-8 p.m.