Colorado River Drought Planning Crosses Milestone

EDF Statement from Kevin Moran, Senior Director, Colorado River Program, and Chair, Water for Arizona Coalition

October 9, 2018
Ronna Kelly, (415) 293-6161,

(PHOENIX, AZ – Oct. 9, 2018) The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation released several draft agreements today related to the implementation of drought contingency plans in both the Upper and Lower basins of the Colorado River, including the multistate Lower Basin Drought Contingency Plan (DCP) agreement. Their release comes as a steering committee is preparing to hold its fifth meeting Wednesday to finalize an agreement by the end of the year that determines how to share increasingly scarce Colorado River water within Arizona.

“Today’s actions by the Bureau of Reclamation mark a major milestone toward finalizing a seven-year, seven-state agreement to create a more sustainable water system for tens of millions of people, agriculture, tribes, businesses and ecosystems.

“Eighteen years of drought have pushed Lake Mead water levels down to unprecedented lows, making it more important than ever for the Arizona Steering Committee to conclude negotiations this year on an intra-Arizona plan for successfully implementing the Lower Basin DCP agreement.

“EDF and the Water for Arizona Coalition will continue to actively support the efforts to develop an Arizona implementation plan with broad-based support from water users, elected leaders and citizens. We need to keep working collaboratively to reach an agreement in Arizona by year end.”

  • Kevin Moran, Senior Director for the Colorado River Program at Environmental Defense Fund and Chair of the Water for Arizona Coalition, serves as an official alternate member of the Arizona Steering Committee.

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EDF is a member of the Water for Arizona Coalition, a community of Arizonans who support innovative practices and smart policies to ensure a reliable water supply to meet the state’s needs.