When it comes to making the most of our water resources, Arizona has a long history of innovation, creativity, and forward thinking. Throughout the state, we are living up to this tradition. Join us for our next WRAN Lunchtime webinars and learn how two local strategies, one in the Verde Valley and the other in Tucson, are benefiting rivers for the habitats, birds, other wildlife, communities, and economies that depend on them.
- Wednesday, December 7th, Noon to 1pm: Introducing the Verde River Exchange Water Offset Program - The Verde River Exchange is a new, pilot "water offset program" in the Verde Valley. A voluntary, collaborative program led by Friends of Verde River Greenway, the Exchange allows local groundwater users to "offset" the impacts of groundwater use on the Verde River system through purchase of credits. Local business leaders and landowners have come together to participate in the program's first pilot projects. The Exchange was recently named a finalist in the New Arizona Prize Water Innovation Challenge; the program's organizers envision sustaining both a healthy, flowing Verde River and a thriving and growing economy in the Verde Valley, for years to come. Join us to learn how it was developed, how it works, and how to get involved. Presented by: Jocelyn Gibbon, J.D.--Principal, Freshwater Policy Consulting, LLC. Jocelyn coordinates the Exchange on behalf of Friends of Verde River Greenway.
- Wednesday, December 14th, Noon to 1pm: Agua Dulce: Tucson Water's plan to return flow to the Santa Cruz - In early November, Tucson Water unveiled a plan that could bring life back to the long-dry stretch of the Sana Cruz River that once flowed through downtown Tucson. Taking advantage of reclaimed effluent, effluent that as of now is sent downriver far from the City, Tucson Water hopes to return flow to the river within two years. Benefits from this work could be far reaching – providing water to support valuable riparian habitat and generating tourism and economic development. Join us to learn more about this innovative and forward-thinking project. Presented by Timothy M. Thomure, PE, ENV SP, Director of Tucson Water.
Water and Business Leaders are in it Together
On November 1, a small group of business and community leaders gathered at the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center to discuss Arizona’s Drought Contingency Plan (DCP) with Arizona Department of Water Resources director Tom Buschatzke and Central Arizona Project general manager Ted Cooke. Hosted by Audubon Arizona and Protect the Flows, the meeting gave participants an opportunity to have an open conversation with one another and the water agency representatives as our communities prepare to address potential water shortages in the years ahead.
The DCP is crucial in determining how Colorado River water shortages will be shared among lower basin states (AZ, CA, and NV), as well as Mexico. Additionally, each state must negotiate with its water users to determine how shortages will be shared by in-state water users. It is anticipated that the basic framework of Arizona’s draft agreement will be released soon, with an eye on late 2016/early 2017 approval of the basic plan.
These negotiations are not a “zero-sum” game. It will be imperative for our community to be engaged in this process in order to ensure that all water users, including wildlife and the riparian habitats upon which they depend, are assured a secure water future. Learn more on our WRAN Resources Page
Camp Verde is for the Birds
The Verde River is one of our last remaining perennial and free-flowing rivers. With a healthy riparian corridor along its length, it is home to countless species including the Western Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Southwestern Willow Flycatcher, Common Black Hawk, and more. In the town of Camp Verde, American Rivers, Friends of Verde River Greenway and Northern Arizona Audubon Society are working to recognize this incredible resource with the designation of a new Important Bird Area. Read more and get involved!
Water in the News
No matter your side of the aisle, digging through the news in the recent months has been a stressful undertaking. Don’t you wish that there was somewhere you could go where you would only find news about rivers, water, and the Colorado River Basin?
You’re in luck! WRAN staff, leaders, and activists work hard to bring you the most balanced, relevant, and science-driven coverage. Take advantage of our vigilance at our Water in the News page.