Las Vegas, Nevada

In a basin at the bottom of the Mojave Desert in Clark County, Las Vegas is flanked on all sides by mountain ranges. A large portion of the terrain is rocky and dry, with desert fauna and vegetation. Although much has been done to lessen the consequences of flash floods through improved drainage systems, it can still be prone to devastating flash floods.

The mountains that encircle Las Vegas rise to heights of over 10,000 feet and serve as barriers against the strong flow of rainfall from the region. Approximately 2,030 feet above sea level, that is. One notable feature of Las Vegas’s demography is its diversity. According to United States Census Bureau data the city has a total area of 135.86 sq mi, of which 135.81 sq mi is land and 0.05 sq mi is water.

Nevada is the third-most seismically active state in the United States, behind Alaska and California. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) has calculated that there is a 10–20% risk that an earthquake of magnitude 6.0 or larger may occur within 50 kilometers of Las Vegas over the next 50 years. There are lots of lawns, trees, and other vegetation throughout the city. A movement to promote xeriscapes has emerged in response to problems with water resources. The scheduling of watering days for residential landscaping is another aspect of conservation initiatives. A program that examined and projected growth and its effects on the environment until 2019 was financed by a grant from the US Environmental Protection Agency in 2008.

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