Lake Mead water levels hit historic lows

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Lake Mead Water Levels Hit Historic Lows

By Ryan Phillips, The Weather Channel

Lake Mead's water level reached a record low this week and is expected to drop further moving into 2016, as the drought stricken region shows no immediate signs of recovery.

The elevation for the man-made reservoir was measured at 1,074 feet on Wednesday, according to the Bureau of Reclamation's Lower Colorado Region. Multiple reports have confirmed that the lake is at its lowest level since the completion of the Hoover Dam amid the Great Depression in 1936.

SEE ALSO: Parts of the US to get 'core of the heat' this summer

Lake Mead provides water for approximately 20 million residents in Arizona, California and Nevada, and is expected to drop by an additional 5 feet by the end of June, ABC News reports.

However, the Arizona Daily Star reported that the lake is expected to see a boost back to 1,078 feet by the end of 2016. The goal for officials is to avoid a formal water shortage, which will be declared if the lake is at 1,075 feet at the end of the year.

See more of California's historic drought:

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Lake Mead water levels hit historic lows

Reservoir banks that were once underwater at Millerton Lake on the San Joaquin River in Friant, a town just north of Fresno in California's Central Valley.

Reservoir banks that used to be underwater are seen at Millerton Lake, on the San Joaquin River, in Friant, California, United States May 6, 2015. California's snowpack, which generally provides about a third of the state's water, is at its lowest level on record. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Reservoir banks that used to be underwater at Millerton Lake on top of the Friant Dam.

Reservoir banks that used to be underwater are seen at Millerton Lake, on the top of the Friant Dam in Friant, California, United States May 6, 2015. California's snowpack, which generally provides about a third of the state's water, is at its lowest level on record. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A field of dead almond trees in Coalinga in the Central Valley. Almonds use an estimated 10% of the state's water budget.

A field of dead almond trees is seen in Coalinga in the Central Valley, California, United States May 6, 2015. Almonds, a major component of farming in California, use up some 10 percent of the state's water reserves according to some estimates. California ranks as the top farm state by annual value of agricultural products, most of which are produced in the Central Valley, the vast, fertile region stretching 450 miles (720 km) north-sound from Redding to Bakersfield. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. Urban users will be hardest hit, even though they account for only 20 percent of state water consumption, while the state's massive agricultural sector, which the Public Policy Institute of California says uses 80 percent of human-related consumption, has been exempted. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Boat docks that were once at the edge of the water on Millerton Lake on the San Joaquin River in Friant.

Boat docks that used to be at the edge of the water are seen at Millerton Lake, on the San Joaquin River, in Friant, California, United States May 6, 2015. California's snowpack, which generally provides about a third of the state's water, is at its lowest level on record. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Reservoir banks that used to be underwater at Millerton Lake, on top of the Friant Dam.

Reservoir banks that used to be underwater are seen at Millerton Lake, on the top of the Friant Dam in Friant, California, United States May 6, 2015. California's snowpack, which generally provides about a third of the state's water, is at its lowest level on record. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A boat paddle at the bottom of the nearly dry Almaden Reservoir near San Jose.

A boat paddle is shown on the bottom of the nearly dry Almaden Reservoir near San Jose, California January 21, 2014. California Governor Jerry Brown last week declared a drought emergency, and the dry year of 2013 has left fresh water reservoirs with a fraction of their normal water reserves. (REUTERS/Robert Galbraith)

A Lake Tahoe ski resort had far less snow than usual this season, as seen in this photo from March.

Skiers slalom through patches of dry ground at Squaw Valley Ski Resort, March 21, 2015 in Olympic Valley, California. Many Tahoe-area ski resorts have closed due to low snowfall as California's historic drought continues. (Photo by Max Whittaker/Getty Images)

A canal runs through dwindling farm fields in Los Banos.

A canal runs through farm fields in Los Banos, California, United States May 5, 2015. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. Urban users will be hardest hit, even though they account for only 20 percent of state water consumption, while the state's massive agricultural sector, which the Public Policy Institute of California says uses 80 percent of human-related consumption, has been exempted. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A view of Pine Flat Lake from an area that used to be underwater in Fresno County.

Pine Flat Lake is seen from an area that used to be underwater in Fresno County, California, United States May 6, 2015. California's snowpack, which generally provides about a third of the state's water, is at its lowest level on record. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A tractor collects golf balls on a parched driving range in Palm Springs. According to state regulations introduced May 5, communities like Palm Springs — where residents use more than 165 gallons of water per person per day — would have to cut back their use by 35%.

A tractor collects golf balls on a driving range in the Palm Springs area, California April 13, 2015. The average daily water usage per person in Palm Springs is 201 gallons, more than double the California average. California's cities and towns would be required to cut their water usage by up to 35 percent or face steep fines under proposed new rules, the state's first-ever mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the state enters its fourth year of severe drought. Communities where residential customers use more than 165 gallons of water per person per day would have to cut back by 35 percent. Picture taken April 13, 2015. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A section of Lake Oroville was nearly dry in August, when it was at 32% of its total 3,537,577-acre-foot area.

A section of Lake Oroville is seen nearly dry on August 19, 2014 in Oroville, California. As the severe drought in California continues for a third straight year, water levels in the State's lakes and reservoirs is reaching historic lows. Lake Oroville is currently at 32 percent of its total 3,537,577 acre feet. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A skier approaches the edge of the snow at Lake Tahoe in March.

A skier makes their way past dry ground at Squaw Valley Ski Resort, March 21, 2015 in Olympic Valley, California. Many Tahoe-area ski resorts have closed due to low snowfall as California's historic drought continues. (Photo by Max Whittaker/Getty Images)

This Millerton Lake jetty, located on the San Joaquin River in Friant, used to be in the middle of the water.

A jetty that used to be in the water is seen leading out to the latest boat docks at Millerton Lake, on the San Joaquin River, in Friant, California, United States May 6, 2015. California's snowpack, which generally provides about a third of the state's water, is at its lowest level on record. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A farmworker walks through thirsty fields in Los Banos, an area of the San Joaquin Valley between Santa Cruz and Merced. On May 5, state water regulators adopted the first rules for mandatory urban water cutbacks. Farms, which account for 80% of the state's water consumption, were exempt from the law.

A worker walks through farm fields in Los Banos, California, United States, May 5, 2015. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. Urban users will be hardest hit, even though they account for only 20 percent of state water consumption, while the state's massive agricultural sector, which the Public Policy Institute of California says uses 80 percent of human-related consumption, has been exempted. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A canal runs through dried-up farm fields in Los Banos.

A canal runs through farm fields in Los Banos, California, United States May 5, 2015. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. Urban users will be hardest hit, even though they account for only 20 percent of state water consumption, while the state's massive agricultural sector, which the Public Policy Institute of California says uses 80 percent of human-related consumption, has been exempted. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Irrigation water runs along a dried-up ditch between rice farms to provide water for fields in Richvale, an agricultural town north of Sacramento.

In this May 1, 2014 photo, irrigation water runs along the dried-up ditch between the rice farms to provide water for the rice fields in Richvale, Calif. A federal agency said Friday it will not release water for most Central Valley farms this year, forcing farmers to continue to scramble for other sources or leave fields unplanted. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A parched water-storage facility near homes in La Quinta.

A water storage facility is seen near homes in La Quinta, California April 13, 2015. California's cities and towns would be required to cut their water usage by up to 35 percent or face steep fines under proposed new rules, the state's first-ever mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the state enters its fourth year of severe drought. Communities where residential customers use more than 165 gallons of water per person per day would have to cut back by 35 percent. Picture taken April 13, 2015. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

A dried-up canal runs through a lush green golf course in La Quinta.

A canal runs through a golf course in La Quinta in the Palm Springs area, California April 13, 2015. The average daily water usage per person in Palm Springs is 201 gallons, more than double the California average. California's cities and towns would be required to cut their water usage by up to 35 percent or face steep fines under proposed new rules, the state's first-ever mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the state enters its fourth year of severe drought. Communities where residential customers use more than 165 gallons of water per person per day would have to cut back by 35 percent. Picture taken April 13, 2015. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Water pours into a dried-out canal in Los Banos.

Water pours into a canal in Los Banos, California, United States May 5, 2015. California water regulators on Tuesday adopted the state's first rules for mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the region's catastrophic drought enters its fourth year. The emergency regulations, which require some communities to trim water use by as much as 36 percent, were approved unanimously late Tuesday by the State Water Resources Control Board weeks after Democratic Governor Jerry Brown stood in a drying mountain meadow and ordered statewide rationing. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Water flows into a dried-out lake on a golf course in La Quinta.

Water flows into a lake on a golf course in La Quinta, California April 13, 2015. California's cities and towns would be required to cut their water usage by up to 35 percent or face steep fines under proposed new rules, the state's first-ever mandatory cutbacks in urban water use as the state enters its fourth year of severe drought. Communities where residential customers use more than 165 gallons of water per person per day would have to cut back by 35 percent. Picture taken April 13, 2015. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

A parched aqueduct in Victorville, a city east of Los Angeles.

An aqueduct is seen in the desert in Victorville, California March 13, 2015. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

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The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has stated its plans to have water pumped into the lake before the end of the year in order to reach a critical water-level mark. This would aid in avoiding cuts in water deliveries made to those in its service area.

The Arizona Daily Star reported that state officials in Arizona, California and Nevada are currently ironing out an agreement that would institute long-term cuts in water deliveries to the states. For example, if a formal shortage is declared, the state of Arizona would lose 320,000 acre feet in the first year that the lake's levels fall below 1,075. That translates to roughly 104 billion gallons.

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