/ Modified apr 16, 2019 4:30 p.m.

Trump Signs Colorado River Drought Contingency Plan

The president announced his approval following a bipartisan effort to move it through Congress.

Lake mead fortification hill Looking out on Boulder Basin, Lake Mead.
National Parks Service

President Trump on Tuesday tweeted he'd signed a drought contingency plan, impacting 40 million Colorado River water users in the West, a milestone following years of negotiations between the states and stakeholders in the river's water.

The drought contingency plan is supposed to help reduce water usage now and better deal with a shortage if it is declared.

The bipartisan bill passed the U.S. House and Senate earlier this month with no opposition. The president's tweet congratulated Republican U.S. Sen. Martha McSally for her efforts getting the bill through the Senate. Trump made no mention of Democratic U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva, who sponsored the bill in the House.

The Colorado River drought contingency plan aims to keep two key reservoirs from falling so low they cannot deliver water or produce hydropower. It was negotiated among the seven states that draw water from the river.

Mexico also agreed to store water in Lake Mead on the Arizona-Nevada border if the U.S. legislation was approved by April 22.

Arizona has the lowest-priority access to Colorado River water and will be hit hardest. The state negotiated a separate agreement to provide other water sources and new groundwater infrastructure for farmers between Phoenix and Tucson.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

By posting comments, you agree to our
AZPM encourages comments, but comments that contain profanity, unrelated information, threats, libel, defamatory statements, obscenities, pornography or that violate the law are not allowed. Comments that promote commercial products or services are not allowed. Comments in violation of this policy will be removed. Continued posting of comments that violate this policy will result in the commenter being banned from the site.

By submitting your comments, you hereby give AZPM the right to post your comments and potentially use them in any other form of media operated by this institution.
AZPM is a service of the University of Arizona and our broadcast stations are licensed to the Arizona Board of Regents who hold the trademarks for Arizona Public Media and AZPM. We respectfully acknowledge the University of Arizona is on the land and territories of Indigenous peoples.
The University of Arizona