Arizona Drought Contingency Plan

Arizona Drought Contingency Plan

Arizona Passes Drought Contingency Plan in the Final Hour

 On January 31, the Arizona State Legislature approved Arizona’s Drought Contingency Plan (DCP).  The bill’s passage was nearly unanimous, and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed it that night. This DCP agreement was a significant and momentous piece of legislation for Arizona, and it could not have been done without the leadership from Governor Ducey, the Tribes, State Legislature, the Arizona Department of Water Resources and the Central Arizona Project. The Arizona business community also played an integral role, with leadership from the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and many BWS corporate partners.

This legislation was considered critical in order to join Mexico and other Colorado River basin states to achieve predictable, long-term water security for Arizona, Lake Mead, and other states reliant on the Colorado River.  Next steps include formalizing agreements that will allow lower basin states to implement conservation efforts to shore up water levels in Lake Mead and maintain water levels in the lake to avert federally declared shortages.

Front page photo from February 1, 2019 Arizona Republic. The photo is meant to be a recreation of the signing of the Groundwater Management Act of 1980.

We offer our sincere thanks for the attention and direct support that many of our business partners provided. Through your participation in meetings, events, and letters, business leadership played a significant role in shaping this positive outcome. The legislators we met with were eager to hear from business leaders, and the perspectives you brought played a significant role in shaping the dialog and ultimate decision to pass the DCP. This agreement was a big accomplishment for the State of Arizona, but we have more work to do. We look forward to your continued engagement on this critical policy area impacting Arizona, its economic health and our various industries as we grow and expand in the future. Your partnership, commitment and attention to this issue made the difference. Click Here to find out more about the economic role the river plays in Arizona and how your company can be involved in our work to advance common sense, bi-partisan solutions to the state’s water challenges.

The latest sobering statistic is that without action, The Bureau of Reclamation is now modeling a 1 in 5 chance that by 2026 there will be no Colorado River Water available for Arizona.

To summarize some quick background information on the state of affairs of Arizona’s water situation:

  • Arizona has been in 18 years of sustained drought; with Lake Mead at only 38% full, and dire predictions for future levels, it’s apparent that Arizona is now under a new hydrology that will shape our business future.
  • With more than 2 million Arizona jobs and 60% of Arizona’s GDP tied to water from the Colorado River, the state’s future and ability to grow will hinge on securing a reliable, predictable, and cost-effective water supply from the Colorado River.
  • Over the last year, the state, the legislature, the tribes and all stakeholders have been working hard to reach an agreement on how to sustain and secure Arizona’s water supply with less run off—the plan that is being developed is called the Drought Contingency Plan (DCP).
  • It is critical that Arizona advance a plan that ensures there is predictable water supply that allows Arizona to continue to grow and do business, and attracts people, workforce and new investments in the state.
  • The DCP plan is designed to provide a safeguard for Lake Mead that can sustain predictable water delivery from the Colorado River for businesses and communities.
  • The DCP is a responsible, non-partisan plan that is good for business and for Arizona.

The latest news on the DCP in Arizona

Arizona Partners