Where the Water Goes: Life and Death Along the Colorado River by David Owen

Into the Wild

Read Where the Water Goes: Life and Death Along the Colorado River Online Free - A brilliant, eye-opening account of where our water comes from and where it all goes

The Colorado River is a crucial resource for a surprisingly large part of the United States, and every gallon that flows down it is owned or claimed by someone. David Owen traces all that water from the Colorado's headwaters to its parched terminus, once a verdant wetland but now a million-acre desert. He takes readers on an adventure downriver, along a labyrinth of waterways, reservoirs, power plants, farms, fracking sites, ghost towns, and RV parks, to the spot near the U.S.–Mexico border where the river runs dry.

Water problems in the western United States can seem tantalizingly easy to solve: just turn off the fountains at the Bellagio, stop selling hay to China, ban golf, cut down the almond trees, and kill all the lawyers. But a closer look reveals a vast man-made ecosystem that is far more complex and more interesting than the headlines let on.

The story Owen tells in Where the Water Goes is crucial to our future: how a patchwork of engineering marvels, byzantine legal agreements, aging infrastructure, and neighborly cooperation enables life to flourish in the desert, and the disastrous consequences we face when any part of this tenuous system fails.

Title : Where the Water Goes: Life and Death Along the Colorado River
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1594633770
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 272 pages


Holly rated it ★★★★☆

May 19, 2017

So interesting. The sort of book I have always wanted to read about the Colorado River and the West's water situation. Like a supplement and update to Marc Reisner's Cadillac Desert.

Lauren rated it ★★★★☆

November 26, 2017

A fascinating and sobering look at the Colorado River's flow, starting in Colorado, and ending at the former (now noexistant) delta in Mexico. Owen travels through time and space, spending less ink on the geology of the river's formation over millions of years, and much more on the engineering an...

Max rated it ★☆☆☆☆

June 29, 2017

As a rural Westerner who writes about his home and stomping grounds, and who shares his writing for free on his blog, I always find it disheartening that the East Coast-based publishing industry habitually elevates Eastern urban writers as experts on rural Western subjects. Momentarily forgetting...

Sherri rated it ★★★★★

August 01, 2017

This is such a fascinating look at the strength and fragility of the Colorado river and how it's used as it flows from the mountains to Mexico. I learned so much, and have had most of my basic assumptions about water conservation turned upside down. A few things I would like to have learned more...

Kayla rated it ★★★★★

January 18, 2018

I live in Phoenix, and though I’ve come into contact with the Colorado River at many different points along its flow, I knew embarrassingly little about the status of the river (spoiler: its over-allocated) and the journey it takes, even though I use water from it every day. I’ve driven through t...

Carl rated it ★★★★☆

August 25, 2017

My first thought was that I think I once read "water is politics" somewhere. If I didn't, I should have. In the case of the Colorado River it surely is. The basin of the Colorado covers 13 western US states which are largely a dry desert area & feeds much land converted to agriculture thru ir...

Gina rated it ★★★★☆

November 10, 2017

A very interesting discussion of the Colorado River and all the issues surrounding it. The first part was especially interesting to me as he discusses lots of places very near to where I live and it made me feel a little famous. The fact is, there is not enough water in the Colorado River to supp...

J.S. rated it ★★★☆☆

September 06, 2017

An interesting look at water issues, particularly as they relate to the Colorado River and the Southwest US. Most of the book feels like more of a travelogue than an in-depth look at the environment, science, or cultural history. And all those elements are combined with Owen's travels and stories...

Judy rated it ★★★★★

July 09, 2017

The author travels the length of the Colorado River from the headwaters to the last bit of water just short of the Gulf of California. Recently, the city of Phoenix paid one of the local Native American tribes not to use all of their water allocation from the Central Arizona Project, which comes...

Robert rated it ★★★★☆

October 05, 2017

A relatively spotty tour guide of Colorado & Utah. On da real doe, Owen effectively communicates both sides of the endless issues surrounding water, particularly environmental. Which is impressive. When was the last time you were engaged with a topic that you felt was addressed openly and rel...

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