Statement of EDF’s David Festa on the Designation of the Colorado River Basin as a Critical Conservation Area

May 27, 2014
Chandler Clay, 202-572-3312,

Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture designated the Colorado River Basin as a Critical Conservation Area (CCA) under the 2014 Farm Bill’s Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP).

“This marks a new era in American conservation efforts, as it will expand opportunities for agricultural producers to keep working lands healthy while reducing impacts on climate, wildlife habitat and water. Particularly, this designation helps fill a critical need across the Colorado River Basin for improved irrigation infrastructure and efficiencies that benefit the producer’s bottom line and provide potential to keep more water in rivers.

“We must ensure the continued productivity of agriculture and sustainable growth in cities, while also protecting the $26 billion recreational economy that depends on a healthy Colorado River. I applaud Senators Udall and Bennet and Congressman Tipton for their leadership and thank our agricultural and conservation partners for coming together to work towards this shared goal, especially in the face of a hotter and drier future for the American West.”

  • David Festa, Vice President, West Coast and Land, Water, Wildlife at Environmental Defense Fund

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