The public comment period is open for a proposed pipeline that would carry water from Lake Powell to southern Utah.
The pipeline would stretch 140 miles across northern Arizona and southern Utah. It would bring 86,000 acre-feet of water annually to the booming population near St. George.
That’s about one-fifth of Utah’s remaining allocation from the Colorado River.
The Utah Division of Water Resources submitted a draft proposal for the pipeline to the federal government earlier this month. Hydroelectric energy would be generated on the downhill portions of the pipeline, to offset the energy costs of pumping water uphill for the first fifty miles.
Total construction costs are estimated between 1 and 2 billion dollars.
If approved, water deliveries could begin as early as 2025. The public comment period runs through the end of February. Utah will submit the final proposal in April, and then the project will undergo environmental review.