37 imagesLas Vegas is thirsty, but the economic heart of Nevada and entertainment capital of the world is short of water, the single most important resource for its sheer existence and further growth. The northwest of the US has been in a draught since the year 2000, and now ultimately the desert city's major water reservoir Lake Mead is running alarmingly dry: this summer, levels at Lake Mead, from which Las Vegas extracts its Colorado River water and 90 per cent of its overall supply of water, have reached a historical low. While the city's Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) has acted in various ways in the past to fight the consequences of the draught – from finding new sources of water to cut down on the city's use and conserve water – for 25 years it had an ultimate plan, a last resort to safe the city from drying up: the construction of 300 miles of pipeline to the north, in order to draw additional water from beneath several secluded valleys along the Nevada-Utah border. The only problem: there are people dwelling in these valleys. They may be few, but for the first time ever, they've formed an unlikely alliance: Native Americans and white ranchers, historic enemies, are now united in their fight to stop Vegas' pipeline plans. This is a story about three people who's paths have (unintentionally) crossed for years over the pipeline project: a tribe chairman, a rancher, and the woman friends and foes have called Vegas' "water czar" for more than two decades.