A World War II-era vessel recently surfaced amid the shrinking waters of Lake Mead, the latest example of the historically low water levels of the reservoir on the Arizona-Nevada border. The unprecedented decline stems from a prolonged megadrought in the U.S. Southwest, among other factors. One professor at the George Washington University says the megadrought has serious environmental, agricultural, and economic impacts.
If you would like more context on this matter, please consider Jonathan P. Deason, co-director of GW’s Environmental and Energy Management Institute and a professor in the School of Engineering and Applied Science. He conducts research in the areas of net zero water and energy for military installations, transition of energy sources from fossil to renewable, decision support systems for environmental and energy management, optimal investments in environmental and energy projects, and environmental and energy systems analysis.
Professor Deason can speak to the factors that constitute a megadrought as well as the impacts these conditions have on communities, economies, and the environment.
As Professor Deason recently told Newsweek, “The megadrought has had huge negative effects, not only on reduced agricultural outputs and resulting increases in the prices of food, but also induced economic effects that are reverberating throughout the economy in terms of lost jobs and reduced standards of living, not to mention impacts on human nutrition. On the environmental side, it is causing drinking water shortages and reductions in the quality of drinking water, as well as increases in airborne particulate matter, which is a major cause of adverse respiratory effects on people.”
Professor Deason can also discuss the measures that can be taken to mitigate the adverse effects of a megadrought.