The news that the Bureau of Land Management greenlighted a pipeline that will bring groundwater 300 miles from around Ely all the way south to Las Vegas is a warning Western Nevadans shouldn't take lightly.
If turned northwest instead of north, that pipeline would just about reach Hawthorne, which is too close for our comfort to the aquifers of Carson Valley.
There was a time when we could count on the seniority and power of Northern Nevada lawmakers to keep the Southern Nevada Water Authority away, but seniority is in short supply these days.
We're rooting for the folks who are challenging the eastern Nevada water grab. Hopefully they can tie the issue up in court for long enough to distract the glittering behemoth to the south from looking our way.
But we may have another savior, one unlooked for, and for the most part unwanted, except maybe for this one instance.
Nevada doesn't want the greater sage grouse to become an endangered species, and we generally support that point of view.
That grouse, though, could be our salvation in the event that we suddenly become Southern Nevada's next big drink of water.
Trying to get an environmental review for a pipeline across the habitat of an endangered species may be enough to discourage our neighbor to the south.
We need to be prepared should Carson Valley's water suddenly appear on Southern Nevada's menu.