The damage has been done now. Deal with it. …
In the 1980's more and more satellite telegraphy was used to look at our environment. This followed early exploratory techniques and disastrous ineptitude over things like atmosphere measurements.
Several example of then and now frames can be compared from the Earth Observatory website.
This is an example:1984 then 2009
As you can see recovery is not accomplished in fact things look to get worse after what I presume is a dry year in 2000:
The question is what do we do now?
I'd like to suggest selling the spoil heaps for hardcore in roads and building construction. Only…
1. There is no road or building construction. The USA is trying to recover from 8 years of idiot.
2. Transport costs prohibit.
Let's take #2. It is a remedial project, cost is not an option. Get it done.
Which is an argument you can apply to #1. People are not building houses because other people can't afford them, not because they are not wanted -needed. In the depression a massive public spending campaign was instituted to get the unemployed into work.
Sounds like it's time to try that again.