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Hoover Dam and Lake Mead
<p>Lake Mead hits historic levels behind Hoover Dam. Some say the lake will go dry because of Las Vegas&#39; over-use of the Colorado River. Others say there&#39;s nothing to worry about.</p>

10 must-read drought stories for June 24

Lots of ink, virtual and real, has been spent the past several months talking about the epic drought in the West, which according to government reports, continues to grow in intensity.

Here’s a list of 10 stories on various aspects and angles of the water shortage in the West.

A farmer’s straight talk on the drought: listen up, city dwellers: San Joaquin Valley Farmer Joe Del Bosque is again featured prominently a little more than a year after President Obama visited his farm as the drought entered its third year in California. Del Bosque tells Western Farm Press that nothing substantial came from the President’s visit though it did draw some much-needed attention to the issue.

Drought disaster in East Porterville turns to budding health crisis: For more than a year residents in parts of Tulare County, Calif. continue to survive in third-world conditions where water must be carried to their homes in containers. Now those conditions are manifesting themselves into health problems for a community without running water.

Lawsuits challenge California’s drought plan: Senior water rights holders challenge California regulators in court over curtailments of pre-1914 water rights.

Gold in a drought: Obama to spend Father’s Day golfing in California: President Obama spends Father’s Day in California doing what he does more often than not: play golf.

California golf trip lands Obama in a water-use debate: President Obama is criticized for golfing in California’s desert playground, rather than calling attention to the serious nature of drought and helping lead discussions on repairing California’s broken water infrastructure before California golfers are forced to play “in one giant sand trap.”

Barack Obama attacked by environmentalists for taking golfing trip to California despite drought and restrictions slashing water use by a quarter: The foreign press was even more unkind to President Obama’s Father’s Day golf outing in Palm Springs, accusing him of ignoring water issues during a severe drought while playing golf in the desert and lecturing on how he plans to take “bold actions at home and abroad to cut carbon pollution.”

Obama hits the links in California amid drought: The White House dodges the irony of President Obama’s weekend golf outing to Palm Springs by pointing out the $100 million the federal government is giving to help fight wildfires.

House Democrats float new California water bill: More than a year after House GOP leadership said California’s drought was “an emergency” that needed to be addressed in like manner, the arguments continue while the real problems go unfixed. Now a group of northern California House Democrats unveil their own proposal to address the drought after complaining that they were “shut out of drought negotiations.” Their proposal does not include water storage projects.

Water isn’t a worry when it comes to Las Vegas growth: Forget the dire predictions: Nevada has plenty of water for today and the future, according to this story.

Return flows deserve all credit for Las Vegas water supply: Though Las Vegas pulls more water from Lake Mead than the entire state of Nevada is entitled to from the Colorado River; return flow credits make the practice possible.

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