Seven states appeared to have come to an agreement on how to deal with a drought and falling water levels along the Colorado River. However, the LA Times says the river’s biggest user brought the agreement to a halt. Southern California’s Imperial Irrigation District filed suit, asking a state court to block the plan until more analysis is done on the environmental impact of the agreement.
The district is attempting to halt the agreement until the federal government ponies up $200 million to restore the shrinking Salton Sea. Imperial holds the senior rights to the single-biggest allocation of river water along the entire length of the Colorado River. The Imperial district threatened legal action and followed through on the same day that President Trump signed federal legislation that authorized the agreement.
Henry Martinez, General Manager of the Imperial district, says, “This legal challenge will put the focus of the agreement back where it should have been all along, right on the Salton Sea.” Imperial contends the agreement violated the California Environmental Quality Act by not analyzing the environmental impact of cutting river water usage without considering how the agency would make up for the shortfall.