Department of Interior Announces Plans for Colorado River Water
The Department of the Interior announced that representatives from the seven Colorado River Basin states have agreed to a proposal that would conserve at least 3 million-acre-feet (maf) of system water through 2026, when the current guidelines are set to expire.
2.3 maf will be compensated through funding from the Inflation Reduction Act, which is also supporting efforts to increase water conservation, increase efficiency of aquafers, and prevent the Colorado River System's reservoirs from falling to historically low levels. The remaining 0.7 maf will be conserved through voluntary, uncompensated reeducations by the Lower Basin states.
"There are 40 million people, seven states, and 30 Tribal Nations who rely on the Colorado River Basin for basic services such as drinking water and electricity. Today's announcement is a testament to the Biden-Harris administration's commitment to working with states, Tribes and communities throughout the West to find consensus solutions in the face of climate change and sustained drought," said Secretary Deb Haaland.