The Salton Sea—An Important Part of the Colorado River’s History and Future

An image of a vegetation enhancement project at the Salton Sea led by the Quantification Settlement Agreement Joint Powers Authority (QSA JPA) of which the San Diego County Water Authority is a partnering agency with the Imperial Irrigation District (IID), the Coachella Valley Water District, and the state. The work of the QSA JPA is separate but complementary to the state’s restoration efforts led by the California Natural Resources Agency. Photo courtesy of IID.

In the ongoing saga that is the Colorado River, the Salton Sea has certainly found its place as an important piece of the river’s story. The sea, an approximately 365-square mile inland lake, crosses two counties, Imperial and Riverside, is home to small communities in both counties (Salton City, Bombay Beach, Desert Shores and Mecca), and to an important California tribe, the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla. The Salton Sea basin has been filled over

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