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This 0 page Class Notes was uploaded by Micheal McDermott on Sunday November 1, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to GLG207 at Miami University taught by Staff in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 16 views. For similar materials see /class/233328/glg207-miami-university in Geology at Miami University.
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Date Created: 11/01/15
Glen Canyon Darn I Introduction 3 In 1869 Major John Wesley Powell recorded the following quote in his journal as he explored the Colorado River So we have a curious ensemble of wonderful features carved walls royal arches glens alcove gulches mounds and monuments From which of these features shall we select a name We decide to call it Glen Canyon 88 years later construction began on the Glen Canyon Darn which created the second largest reservoir in the United States Glen Canyon Dam was created to store water for drought years and to generate electricity Glen Canyon Institute 4 Within this paper I will provide you with some background infomation about Glen Canyon some information about the project advantages and disadvantages to the dam the current controversy over the dam and my nal judgment of the darn Oquot 0 9 II Body a Background information about Glen Canyon Dam g1 will be adding more to this area I am in the process of receiving another book that deals more with Glen Canyon s History i The Anasazi Indians inhabited Glen Canyon for a millennium 1 They created a dam catch basins dikes canals and reservoirs 2 They used the river for irrigating their crops Martin 108 ii Gold was found in the canyon 1 Many miners entered the canyon to nd their treasure 2 The gold was very ne and suspended in the water and the miners were not able to extract it 3 Much of their equipment still remains in the canyon Martin 128 b Information about the water project 39 The dam was authorized as part of the Colorado River Storage Project in wig 213 g 7 1956 USER dquot 11 The rst detonation occurred during a ceremony in Glen on October 15 6 w MWM r 1956 Mmm 87 Ai quot39 iii Glen Canyon darn was built by the Bureau of Reclamation between 1957 and 1964 U 8BR km MW 7 1 A company by the name of MerrittChapman and Scott won the n 66W bid for constructing the dam for a price of 107 million Martin I 5 p 97 Wx r M 61 a A quarter of a mile suspended bridge was constructed over V gel j the dam Martin13 W M I I b Tunnels had to be constructed to divert the river around the Wquot dam site Also roads airstrips electrical lines and Ii telephone lines were constructed Martin 87 l mtmu 2 2 Glen Canyon Dam is both a gravity and an arch dam aha41V mt a The dam is 300 feet thick at the base and 25 feet thick at the crest b It is 1560 feet in length at the curved crest Martin 189 c The dam stands 710 feet tall and it is 587 feet above the riverbed Martin 3 d Upon its completion Glen Canyon Dam was the third highest dam in the world Martin 190 3 Other information about Glen Canyon Dam a The dam is used to generate 13 million kilowatts of electricity A CT 9 b According to a compact agreed upon in November of 1922 C the Upper Basin Colorado New Mexico Utah and 1ij M 21 Wyoming are to receive 75 million acrefeet of water each M year The Lower Basin Arizona California and Nevada is also to receive the same amount with California receiving an additional million acrefeet Martin 13 25 c Advantages 1 Creation of Lake Powell has created a large recreation area that generated 380 million in 1998 Glen Canyon Institute 18 Q g ii The electricity that is generated can be used by the surrounding states iii The water stored in the dam can be used for irrigation for surrounding P farms Marin 241 Mmquot W P m M44 iv The reservoir has caused themater temperature to decrease and this has allowed the area to support a large trout shery Martin 97 d Disadvantages i Lake Powell is losing 570000 acrefeet of water every year to evaporation 1 This amount of water could sustain Salt Lake City 2 Since 1963 a total of 21410000 acrefeet of water has been evaporated Glen Canyon Institute 5 ii The dam was constructed in an area of Navajo Sandstone which is a very porous rock It has an average porosity of 25 Manning 209 1 A total of 10000000 acrefeet of water has been lost to the canyon walls 2 Evaporation and loss of water to the canyon walls totals 30000000 acrefeet of water Glen Canyon Institute 5 The area behind the dam is slowly lling with sediment 1 The Colorado River used to carry 60 to 180 million tons of sediment every year 2 Now 85 of this sediment is trapped behind the Glen Canyon Dam This has resulted in a storage capacity reduction of 932000 acrefeet 3 Estimates show that the reservoir could ll between 200 to 800 years Glen Canyon Institute 6 3 I d 0 W iv The salinity of the water is increasing J M was 397 2 Lari f 44 ii39 M W The salinity can be attributed to irrigation evaporation of the water industrial sources and natural causes This is costing users of the water 25 million dollars every year Glen Canyon Institute 7 a The salinity is causing corrosion in household appliances it is damaging cooling systems in cars and people must purchase bottled water to drink Staid 8 b The salinity if also causing a crop yield reduction and a decrease in the amount of land that farmers are planting Staid 8 v Impact of Environment and Wildlife vii vi 1 The dam is having a negative effect on some native sh species a The river water temperature has decreased from a range of 40 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit to a yearround temperature of 46 degrees b Four species are endangered and one species has disappeared from the area Glen Canyon Institute 8 c Glen Canyon Dam also blocks the spawning migrations of the sh Committee 142 2 Exotic species have been introduced to the area 397 it 41 t HWY 3 rt a Currently 10000 ephemeropterans 10000 snails 5000 leeches 2000 craw sh and thousands of insects from 10 different families have been introduced to the area Committee 106 b The lack of oods has allowed exotic plant species to ourish and compete with the native species 0 The exotic species are also competing against the native species for food Glen Canyon Institute 8 Health issues have also arisen due to the construction of the Glen Canyon Dam Selenium and mercury naturally occur in the canyons However p n N 5 these concentrations are now building up behind the dam because they are not allowed to ow on out to sea Glen Canyon Institute 11 It is believed that these high concentrations could inhibit egg production in sh Committee 90 1d uranium mill tailings are putting high concentrations of arsenic barium cadmium lead selenium and vanadium into the water Radioactive materials such as Thorium230 Radium226 and Radon222 are also accumulating in the water Bacteria levels in the water are also increasing due to human waste being deposited in the lake om recreational visitors Glen Canyon Institute 11 Two stroke engines are releasing 1 million gallons of pollution into the reservoir every year Glen Canyon Institute 15 Native American land and artifacts have been destroyed l The Anasazi Indian artifacts were destroyed by the rising reservoir before all of them could be studied Martin 108 2 The area near Rainbow Bridge has been ooded and this area is considered sacred by both the Navajo and Hopi Indian Tribes Glen Canyon Institute 16 e Current Controversy 39 It is now being debated as to whether or not Glen Canyon Dam should be taken out of commission to restore the canyon to its natural state For decommissioning 1 ii iii 1 2 3 The reduction in evaporation would allow the ow into the Colorado River Delta to increase by 444000 acrefeet every year Trapped sediment could be redistributed throughout the river hope illy restoring the native habitat Glen Canyon Dam only generates 3 of the electricity that is used by Colorado Utah Arizona and New Mexico Glen Canyon Institute 14 Against decommissioning N 3 There would be a loss of 380 million dollars in recreation Glen Canyon Institute 18 i It would take approximately 1520 years to drain the reservoir Glen Canyon Institute 17 Many sh could also die due to lack of water when the reservoir water level decreases ABC News I My nal judgment and Summary Based on the information I have learned about Glen Canyon Dam I am in support of decommissioning the dam i ii 1 2 I have found overwhelming evidence to support the restoration of the canyon According to the information I have found there are far more negative effects of the dam than positive effect There was little information on websites and in books about the negative effects of draining the lake I also emailed an organization in support of keeping Glen Canyon Dam Friends of Lake Powell in order to receive more information about the controversy over decommissioning the dam and they failed to return my email message Glen Canyon Dam has both bene cial and negative qualities for animals the environment and for humans We must weigh both sides of this issue to determine if it is in the best interest of both man and Earth to keep Glen Canyon Dam in commission 6mm 9 i f MaWW lZLlex r 20
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