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Central Arizona Project has enough water to cope with global warming

Central Arizona Project is preparing for a severe water shortage if global warming leads to drier conditions over the next decade. CAP officials said scientific models of climate change they are monitoring indicate the state will experience hotter and drier conditions through the year 2025.

But spokesman Mitch Basefsky said the CAP doesn’t anticipate an immediate shortage of water from the Colorado River. He says since 1997 CAP has been storing water underground in Maricopa, Pinal and Pima Counties to meet future demand.

“We’ve stored about five years, a little over five years of delivery so if we do have an issue with climate change we have already taken water off the river that can be used to augment those supplies that  may otherwise not be available," he said.

Basefsky said CAP is also studying methods to artificially seed clouds so they produce more rain and snow to increase water supplies. CAP shared its plan to deal with global warming Tuesday during a Water Resources Conference at the University of Arizona in Tucson.