What record-low water levels at the Hoover Dam reservoir look like from space

A bathtub ring watermark at Hoover Dam / Lake Mead has dropped two inches every day since February (26 feet in one year) is viewed on July 12th, 2022, near Boulder City, Nevada. | Photo by George Rose/Getty Images

The US’s largest water reservoir, Lake Mead at the Hoover Dam, is in very, very bad shape. How bad is it? New satellite images from NASA show just how much the reservoir’s footprint has shrunk over the past two decades — and the difference between July 2000 and July 2022 is stark.

Water levels at Lake Mead are at a historic low — the reservoir hasn’t been this empty since 1937 when it was being filled for the first time. It’s currently at just 27 percent capacity. The last time it was close to full capacity was 1999, just one year before the image on the left of the slider below was taken.

The water elevation at the Hoover Dam stood at a meager 1,041 feet on July 18th, 2022, according to the Bureau of Reclamation, which manages Lake…

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