Concerned about demands created by Nevada's growing population, the state Conservation and Natural Resources Department plans to ask for $1 million from the 2009 Legislature for a study of available underground water and other water sources.
The plan follows an unsuccessful effort by Gov. Jim Gibbons to get the 2007 Legislature to appropriate $2 million for the Desert Research Institute and the state engineer's office to conduct a water inventory.
The Southern Nevada Water Authority is planning a huge pipeline project to get billions of gallons of water every year from rural Nevada for the Las Vegas area.
The agency, feeling the effects of a seven-year drought on the Colorado River which provides most of its water, hopes to begin delivering the rural groundwater to Las Vegas by 2015.