Regarding "a river runs near it," we really shouldn't call this water development (hcn, 9/15/08). It really is just water reallocation. No new water is being developed. Every time we reallocate water in substantial quantities, we do so crudely. This is probably just a little less crude than in the past, but we really don't understand the impacts.
There was no mention of the siltation rates. What is the longevity of these mega-scale, industrial age solutions? Fifty years? One hundred years? Certainly, it will be long enough for mindless development to siphon off handsome profits before the developers discover they are once again threatened with water deficits. I guess it doesn't really matter — climate change, peak oil, and growing water scarcity will soon be shutting things down.
W. John Faust