|Las Vegas Valley|
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Location of Las Vegas Valley, NevadaCoordinates: -115.136389, 36.175
The Las Vegas site is located along Las Vegas Wash, a natural drainage channel that drains the 4,144 km2(1,600 mi2) Las Vegas Valley, carrying the flow of storm water, urban runoff, and highly treated waste water from urban Las Vegas to Lake Mead. Changes in precipitation, urbanization, and human alteration of the natural drainage has dynamically changed the regions wetland ecosystems. Increased well activity due to rapid population growth is causing ground water levels to rapidly drop.
The Las Vegas Valley is located in Clark County, Nevada in the southwest United States.
Center Coordinate: Latitude 36° 05' 09" N, Longitude 115° 00' 15" W
November 12, 1999 – February 28, 2010.
Las Vegas Wash is a natural perennial stream carrying the flow of treated wastewater, surface runoff, shallow groundwater discharge, and storm water from urban Las Vegas to Lake Mead. A wetland system has formed along the Wash that supports a variety of plant and animal life. Rapid urbanization of Las Vegas since the 1970's has increased the flows of water into Las Vegas Wash. Increase in water flow and storm events are causing erosion in the Las Vegas Wash. This erosion along with sediment transport has led to channel destabilization, resulting in a loss of wetlands and habitat.
Construction on a series of grade control structures for streambed stabilization (low height dams called weirs) began at approximately the same time as image collection for this GFL site (1999). Changes in channel morphology began almost as soon as the weirs were completed. The weirs create small holding areas for the water and also slow down the flow by placing obstructions in the channel where the flow rates would be highest. Monitoring of this area provides information on urban grown and impact on water resource management as well as destabilization and loss of wetlands and habitat.
Historically Las Vegas Valley was an oasis in the southwest dessert, and as such they became a central hub for population. Population began to grow with the construction of the Hoover Dam on the nearby Colorado River and continues to rapidly increase. However as a consequence of population growth, without an increase in available water resources, groundwater levels began to drop. Rapid population growth has also increased the amount of waste from the city which gets discharged into the lower portion of the Las Vegas Wash. This increase of discharge has led to erosion, which along with sediment transport has led to the destabilization of the surrounding landscape, resulting in loss of wetlands and habitats in the area. The Global Fiducials Program image time series presents a high resolution image set that clearly depicts changes resulting from human and natural changes to this area.
Go to download page for entire Las Vegas Valley imagery set...[coming soon]