Arizona Chamber Foundation Policy Brief Outlines Steps Needed to Preserve Water for Future Generations

Phoenix (October 25) – With 40 million users today and as many as 75 million users by 2060, smart water planning is critical to life and economic prosperity in the American West – our collective futures depend upon it.

The Arizona Chamber Foundation released a Policy Brief today outlining Arizona’s role in creating a sustainable drought contingency plan to ensure a steady supply of Colorado River water is available for generations to come.

While periods of drought are not unusual and should be expected, the Colorado River has just seen its driest 19-year stretch in recorded 100-year history.

“Water scientists and planners at all levels agree that every precaution must be taken to keep Lake Mead at high enough elevations to ensure distribution to the homes, businesses, cities and tribes that rely on this water,” said Foundation Policy Advisor Courtney McKinstry.

“This Policy Brief seeks to educate the business community, policymakers and other Arizonans on our ongoing efforts to negotiate a sustainable drought plan,” she said.

Arizona negotiations are happening now with hopes that a finalized plan will be ready at the end of the year. If Arizona water users come to a consensus, it’s more likely that an agreement can be forged with California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming — Colorado River water users. Should the seven states sign a full Drought Contingency Plan by year’s end and emerge with a united front, the federally required approvals should proceed with relative ease, the policy brief states.

“It will take an untold number of hours, and deep wells of patience from hundreds of partners across Arizona to plan our way through this,” the brief concludes.

“A collaboratively built and broadly supported Lower Basin Drought Contingency Plan is worth the effort to preserve the way of life that has drawn millions to Arizona and the American West and to ensure that we do not take more from the mighty Colorado than it can give,” according to the brief.

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About the Arizona Chamber Foundation
The Arizona Chamber Foundation is a non-profit, objective educational and research foundation. We are committed to a non-partisan, research-driven approach that analyzes the issues impacting Arizona’s economy. It houses the A for Arizona and Chamber Business News initiatives. Find out more at