Is the Monsoon Here Yet?

A month or two ago, Connie Tuttle sent me an e-mail that, to paraphrase, said: Hey, a while back, we did a collection of stories for a special issue on sex (that was the Sex Issue, Feb. 10, 2005). Seeing as we're in a scary, dusty, historic drought, why don't we do a special issue about it?

Well, you're looking at the result of that e-mail and subsequent discussion. Welcome to the Water Issue.

The fact is that our little patch of the Sonoran Desert wasn't designed for a million people (give or take several hundred thousand), and our presence--combined with this record-breaking drought--has affected things. We're using more water than nature provides to the area. So, what are we doing about all of this?

These are the questions we attempt to scratch the surface of this week. Dave Devine takes a gander at the Tucson area's long-term plans to get the water we need. Lee Allen examines how the drought is affecting area wildlife. Connie Tuttle looks at our conservation plans, while Saxon Burns discusses how efforts to restore some of Pima County's diminished riparian areas may help us all in the long run. Finally, Margaret Regan checks out how local artists are dealing with water and drought.

And, on a different-yet-related note, John Peck talks about the booming bottled water business in the Chow section.

Hopefully, this issue will provide good food for thought--and action, too. Enjoy--and keep your fingers crossed for a long, wet monsoon season.

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