Master of Arts in History
David Wrobel, Committee Chair
First Committee Member
Second Committee Member
Graduate Faculty Representative
Number of Pages
This thesis examines the history of the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) and how it has helped transform various aspects of southern Nevada's economy and environment. Prior to the establishment of the SNWA in 1991 the Las Vegas Metropolitan Area (LVMA) possessed several competing water providers whose opposition to one another adversely affected the management of water in the region. These water providers recognized this problem, came together, and negotiated the creation of a regional water agency, the SNWA. This organization, comprised of representatives from each of the LVMA's water providers has the power to institute policy across municipal boundaries. The SNWA has proven to be a remarkably potent political organization, one whose success has generated significant controversy. This study speaks to these local historical developments, while contextualizing the SNWA and water use in Southern Nevada within a larger historical context of water use in the southwestern United States and, more broadly, in desert environments worldwide.
Authority; Las Vegas; Nevada; SNWA; Southern; Water
Harrison, Christian, "Water use and natural limits in the Las Vegas Valley: A history of the Southern Nevada Water Authority" (2009). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 28.