ARIZONA WILL CONTINUE EFFORTS TO PLAN FOR SUSTAINABLE WATER SUPPLIES FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS
A joint study between the Seven Basin States in the Colorado River Basin, Bureau of Reclamation and key water agencies identifies possible solutions to reduce projected water imbalances on the Colorado River
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 12, 2012
Michelle Moreno, (602) 771-8530 email@example.com
Crystal Thompson, (602) 321-9349 firstname.lastname@example.org
Phoenix (December 12, 2012) – The Bureau of Reclamation released a study which concludes that with implementation of additional measures, projected future imbalances in supply and demand on the Colorado River can be successfully managed. The study concludes that by 2060, and in some cases by 2025, future demands on Colorado River water may exceed the available supplies. The study shows prudent planning and targeted investments in additional water supplies and conservation efforts will sustain the Colorado River system into the future.
The Colorado River Basin Water Supply and Demand Study (Study) is the most recent collaboration between the Seven Colorado River Basin States, Arizona represented by the Arizona Department of Water Resources, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah and Wyoming, the Bureau of Reclamation, Native American Indian Tribes, multiple water users in the Basin, including the Central Arizona Project (CAP) and other key water agencies to address Colorado River demand and supply issues. Additional stakeholders included power providers, recreation, and environmental organizations.
The Study is the result of a three-year cooperative effort in developing a comprehensive plan to quantify and address the risks posed by imbalances between Colorado River water supply and needs throughout the Basin, including water needs for a healthy river. This is also the first time that the possible impact of climate change has been considered as one of the variables in projecting the availability of the Colorado River’s future supplies.
Because of the work of past studies, these conclusions of the Basin Study are not unexpected. Water managers and users in the Colorado River Basin have been proactively planning and implementing programs to prepare for potential water supply and demand imbalances. In Arizona, these efforts have included implementation of one of the nation's most comprehensive water conservation and management programs, administered by the Arizona Department of Water Resources and investments in water storage and related facilities as well as augmentation programs by CAP and other water providers.
Governor Brewer is optimistic that Arizona is ready to take appropriate actions, stating that, “It is fitting that this Study has been released in the year of Arizona’s Centennial; Arizona has a legacy of leadership in water management. From the Native Americans who built the canals and irrigation systems, to early settlers who expanded these canal systems; the construction of the Salt River Project including Roosevelt and other dams, to the completion of the Central Arizona Project, to the visionary implementation of the Groundwater Management Act. Arizona has always proactively addressed its water challenges to ensure long-term reliable water supplies for all Arizonans.”
"To date, the Central Arizona Project through its investment in underground storage of water has stored significant amounts of water for the future and has participated in pilot augmentation programs. Now with the release of the Basin Study, we need to take the next step in preparing for investment in large-scale augmentation, such as desalinization projects or water transfers." said Pam Pickard, CAP Board President
Along with the release of the Study, the leaders of the seven states within the Colorado River Basin commit to taking further action to address the projected imbalances, possible actions include; identifying and implementing additional conservation and reuse programs, investing in new infrastructure projects, conducting feasibility studies, pursuing legislation and the development of new policies. These efforts will require that the Basin States, water agencies, Native American Tribes and private stakeholders continue to work together to protect and enhance the Colorado River and its supplies.
Earlier this year, the Arizona Department of Water Resources and CAP, along with other cooperating partners in the Study were presented with the Department of Interior’s “Partners in Conservation Award”. Deputy Secretary of the Interior, David J. Hayes presented this award in recognition of conservation achievements that include collaborative activity among a diverse range of entities, including federal, state, local and tribal governments, and individuals.
The Study can be found at: http://www.usbr.gov/lc/region/programs/crbstudy.html