Colorado River water agreements



Colorado leaders to weigh protections for Western Slope water, restrictions on cities' abilities to divert water for recreational purposes and the biggie -  what do do about the Colorado River (link will send you to Grant Junction Sentinel)


An unprecedented fight is shaping up over the 1922 Colorado River Compact, which governs how water in the river is divided between seven states. The upper basin states Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and New Mexico are required to deliver a certain amount of water to the lower basin states of Arizona, Nevada and California, according to the compact. But Lake Powell, which assured the compact's requirement for sending enough water downstream, is drying up literally because of the ongoing drought. Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton has given the seven states until May to come to an agreement on how to share Colorado River water. Grand Junction Daily Sentinel_ 1/18/05


December, 2004

Nevada officials approve $330 million Colorado River water-sharing pact with Arizona

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The pact is intended to ensure supplies for tens of thousands of new homes planned for the booming Las Vegas metropolitan area over the next several years. Nevada officials called the deal an important "bridge" to help the area withstand a drought. The pact will also provide time to tap underground water. Reuters_ 12/16/04

Arizona Water Banking Authority adds its OK to $330 million Las Vegas water agreement

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The Southern Nevada Water Authority in Las Vegas is scheduled to vote on it within a few days. The agreement calls for Arizona to guarantee 1.25 million acre-feet of its annual Colorado River water allotment to Nevada in return for $330 million from the Las Vegas-area water authority over the next 15 years. It includes a pledge for Las Vegas water officials to support Arizona's call for a rewrite of rules allocating Colorado River water. California is entitled to 4.4 million acre-feet of water yearly from the river, Arizona 2.8 million and Nevada 300,000. AP/San Francisco Chronicle_ 12/10/04

COLORADO RIVER: Transfer of water approved
$330 million deal to give Nevada reserve from Arizona's allotment

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Arizona's largest water supplier has approved a plan that would transfer 1.25 million acre-feet of the state's Colorado River water to Nevada, a reserve large enough to supply Southern Nevada for four years. In exchange, Arizona would get $330 million and Nevada's support as it seeks to change a decades-old agreement that forces Arizona to absorb the largest share of any shortage on the Colorado River.  Las Vegas Review Journal _12/4/04


Mexico will pay off U.S. water debt 'in the next few years'

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A 1944 water-sharing treaty requires Mexico to send the United States an average of 350,000 acre-feet of water annually from six Rio Grande tributaries. The United States in return must send Mexico 1.5 million acre feet from the Colorado River. Abundant rains in 2003 and 2004 largely replenished South Texas' two Rio Grande reservoirs and allowed Mexico to reduce its water debt from 1.5 million acre-feet to less than 800,000 acre-feet. Rio Grande Valley irrigators and farmers have filed a US$500 million damage claim against Mexico for crop loss and other damages the group says were caused by that country's failure to comply with the two countries' water-sharing treaty. AP/Arizona Daily Sun_ 11/11/04

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