The ongoing threat of significant drought in the West is nothing new, but the recent plummet of  water levels in Lake Mead in Colorado has put many on edge that the worst is yet to come.

Recently, the Interior Department required water cuts to Arizona and neighboring states in the West. The states supported by Lake Mead are becoming increasingly at risk as climate change raises heat in the U.S.

With many farms and millions of livestock, the water supply is crucial for the survival of the area’s farming industries.

The agency issued its first cuts in the previous year after Lake Mead’s water levels dropped below original predictions.

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Assistant Secretary of Interior for water and science, Tanya Trujillo, said that the government was creating a “detailed” initiative to prevent the water supply from dropping further.

Trujillo also stated the urgent needed for action if the area is to minimize the damage from climate change.

“Without prompt, responsive actions and investments now, the Colorado River and the citizens that rely on it will face a future of uncertainty and conflict,” she said.

With the cuts being borne disproportionately by some states, Arizona’s Department of Water Resources Director Tom Buschatzke and Arizona Project General Manager Ted Cooke said it was “unacceptable” that their state was taking most of the cuts.

“It is unacceptable for Arizona to continue to carry a disproportionate burden for reductions for the benefit of others who have not contributed,” the two said in a statement.

In recent months, dropping water levels in Lake Mead have revealed four sets of human remains from homicides years ago.

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