New projections by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation show a 50 percent chance that Arizona will face shortages in the delivery of Colorado River water in 2016.
A loss of 320,000 acre feet wouldn't affect cities like Phoenix, Tucson, and Native American tribes.
But the Central Arizona Project would cut the amount of water it stores underground and limit the amount available for purchase by agricultural customers.
The Bureau of Reclamation released its operations plan Friday. It shows a 2 percent chance of Lake Mead in Nevada reaching the trigger point in 2015 for a shortage declaration. That percentage chance increases to 50 in 2016.
Farmers in irrigation districts in central and southern Arizona are planning for a shortage by fixing up water wells they would need to pump groundwater.
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Monday, September 15 2014 1:00 PM EDT2014-09-15 17:00:00 GMT
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Monday, September 15 2014 6:31 PM EDT2014-09-15 22:31:28 GMT
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