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Full Version: The American West is drying out. Things will get ugly
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(CNN)The incredible pictures of a depleted Lake Mead, on the California-Nevada border, illustrate the effects of drought brought on by climate change.

Later this year, the US government will almost certainly declare the first-ever water shortage along the Colorado River. Maps show more than a quarter of the US is in "exceptional drought," underscoring the scope of a decades-long dry-out.

Stories are popping up across the West of possible rationing, coming restrictions and looming standoffs between farmers and the government over the most precious natural resource.

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