Business leaders say Colorado River is running dry

Business leaders say Colorado River is running dry

Yuma, az-Several business leaders who depend on the Colorado River for their livelihoods bring awareness to its scarce water supply.

A bird's eye view shows how the Colorado River is running dry.

"This is no longer a healthy ecosystem down here with out the river meeting the sea and that in turn could affect our businesses because if the Colorado River maintains that lack of health and moves upstream then it will affect all of us," Lisa Lamberson, a small business owner said.

Lamberson's business sells hiking gear, ski and snowboard clothing in Flagstaff said her livelihood depends on the Colorado River.

She was among several business owners who went on an aerial tour to view the dried up river areas in San Luis Rio Colorado and Yuma.

The group hopes to find solutions to help keep the river flowing.

"We want to make it clear there needs to be healthy river flows for recreations and for enjoyment of the Colorado river," Lamberson said.

She said if businesses protect the flow of the Colorado River it will protect their profits.

"Protect the flows" a coalition of business-rafting outfitters and outdoor retailers said the river's water level has decreased by 20 percent and now its drying up in the Sonoran Desert.

"We come down here because I don't think many people realize that the Colorado River no longer reaches the seas," she said.

Lamberson said there are glimmers of hope for the Colorado River. 

She said she was able to see how the Cienega de Santa Clara in Mexico has had its wetland restored.

"We were able to see the introduction of the freshwater with saltwater and it has recreated its eco-system," she said. "I do think that there is hope for repair and if we continue to move in a direction of collaboration."

Protect the flows organization said the river is the lifeline of the west but wonder if it will be here for generations to come.

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