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From Our Members

Blog posts and latest happenings from our coalition members.

Audubon Arizona

Spring 2020 Magazine

Toxic Legacy Spring 2020 Magazine. A deadly pesticide mounts a comeback, this time as a brutal weapon against birds and other wildlife. 

American Rivers

We are rivers Podcast

To further the conversation about the value and complexity of rivers, American Rivers launched our podcast series, “We are Rivers: Conversations about the Rivers that Connect Us.”

Environmental Defense Fund

How water managers can build recharge basins to boost resilience for farmers & birds alike

Recharge basins are becoming increasingly popular in overdrafted regions in California, where water managers are seeking solutions to balance groundwater supply and demand to comply with the state’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA).

Environmental Defense Fund

How This bill will protect scarce water supplies for rural Arizona

Groundwater pumping is essentially unregulated in nearly 80% of the state, putting the livelihoods and water supplies of up to 1.5 million residents at risk.

Audubon Arizona 

Arizona Legislators, Western Rivers Action Network Discuss Water Security

After helping pass landmark legislation last year, Audubon and its partners focus on prioritizing water and birds at annual advocacy day.

Western Resource Advocates

Action Alert

Groundwater – the water supply that lies just under our feet, stored in formations of soil, sand and rock called aquifers – is an essential water source for communities across Arizona.

American Rivers 

How Stormwater Affects Your Rivers 

Rivers are dependent on their surrounding lands (known as the watershed) for a consistent supply of clean water. Altering a watershed does many things; one of the most significant is to alter the way stormwater soaks into the ground or flows to the local river.

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Western Resource Advocates 

Science be dammed

There are countless Colorado River resources available to learn about the history of how the river has been and continues to be governed. Hundreds of books, reports, studies, and papers have been written on the subject.

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Audubon Arizona 

Prioritizing Water Security for Arizona’s Birds and People

With these water reductions officially underway, Audubon is looking ahead to what is next, with our focus on prioritizing water security for all of us in Arizona, including our birds and wildlife.

Here are three water policy priorities for Audubon Arizona as we enter the 2020 Legislative Session:

Environmental Defense Fund

What 2,000 years of traditional Hopi farming in the arid Southwest can teach about resilience

When Michael Kotutwa Johnson was 8 years old, he began spending much of his time on the Hopi reservation in Arizona with his grandfather, who taught him how to farm.

For more than 2,000 years, the Hopi have been farming without irrigation in an area of Arizona that receives less than 10 inches of rain a year.

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American Rivers 

Big news for the Gila River

We are closer than ever to securing more permanent protection for New Mexico’s last major free-flowing river.

You may recall that we listed the Gila as #1 due to the threat of a major diversion that could be built on the Gila, just downstream from where the river tumbles out of the first Wilderness area designated in the United States.

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Audubon Arizona 

Snowpack in the West. 

Snowpack in the West is essential to creating healthy flowing rivers that support recreation, tourism, and habitat for thousands of species. Communities also rely on the snowpack to fill reservoirs that supply cities and towns with a steady supply of drinking water year-round.

American Rivers

Arizona: Looking back on 2019 - Looking ahead to 2020

2020 is shaping up to be a pivotal year for the long-term sustainability of Arizona. The holiday season is upon us, and between the deep-fried turkey disaster, the sprigs of plastic mistletoe hanging about, and the cat knocking down the Christmas tree, ‘tis the season to look back upon the year that was, and get excited for the new year ahead.

Image by Samara Doole

Environmental Defense Fund

2019 made climate impacts visible. Here are 4 stories of resilience that give me hope for 2020.

Farmers took big hits from unprecedented flooding in the Midwest, coastal communities were pummeled with record-breaking rainfall and storms, and more than 250,000 acres in my home state of California burned from wildfires that took precious lives and left millions of people without power for days on end.

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Audubon Arizona 

10 Things You Should Know About Arizona’s Groundwater Management Act

In the midst of the ongoing drought and increasing temperatures throughout the West, Lake Mead and the Colorado River get a lot of attention. However, with all the dialogue around surface water, we cannot forget about groundwater—the water found underground in the cracks and spaces in soil, sand, and rock.

American Rivers

Stay Flexible, Arizona 

Collaboration might be the only way forward for communities facing an uncertain water future. 

It’s a fact of life in the Colorado River Basin that no one is really in charge.

Instead, the complicated business of managing the basin’s water supply is achieved collaboratively by an array of federal and state agencies, quasi-agencies, irrigation districts, cities, Native American nations and the Republic of Mexico — all operating according to a complex set of rules called the Law of the River. 

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Audubon Arizona 

Why Groundwater Matters for Arizona’s People and Birds

Groundwater takes thousands of years to accrue—and sometimes—just decades to deplete. When too much is pumped out of the ground too fast—as we have seen throughout Arizona—entire river stretches and the ecosystems and wildlife that rely on that water can be depleted.

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Western Resource Advocates

Despite Bountiful Snowpack Earlier This Year, Large Portions of the West Experiencing Drought Conditions

After a record start for snowpack across the Interior West earlier this year, the region is once again experiencing drought conditions and two main reservoirs remain far from full. 

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Audubon Arizona 

International Infrastructure Issues Threaten Arizona’s Santa Cruz River

Why fixing a nine-mile sewage pipe is crucial for people and birds.

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Environmental Defense Fund 

This creative tax is a good bet for Colorado’s water future. Here’s why.

Here’s a pop quiz: What are two finite resources in the West?

If you answered money and water, you win. 

American Rivers

6 Ways to Make Dams Easier to Remove 

American Rivers has 20 years of experience freeing rivers from unnecessary dams. Here’s our advice on how to take the dam removal movement to the next level.

Environmental Defense Fund

Colorado River Basin story map highlights importance of managing water below the ground

The Colorado River is a water workhorse for seven western states, supplying drinking water to 40 million people. But it’s not the region’s only important source of water.

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Audubon Arizona 

How Craft Beer Is Helping Save Water In the Colorado River Basin

The Western Rivers Brewers Council continues to be an integral partner of Audubon Arizona’s dedication to a sustainable water future.

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American Rivers 

Sonora Rising 

Water and wheat — foundations of life for millennia. In the American Southwest’s arid Sonoran Desert, water flows across Arizona from more than 300 miles away to quench the thirsts of more than four million people and sustain the food, economy, and livelihoods they rely on every day. 

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Walton Family Foundation

Heeding a Spiritual and Sacred Call to Protect the Colorado River

Native American tribes are seeking a greater voice as stewards of a river that’s been home for millennia
Water is life. Water is the giver and sustainer of life.

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Environmental Defense Fund

Resilience on the river

The Gila River Indian Community in Arizona played a critical role in a historic seven-state agreement to conserve water from the Colorado and build a more resilient future in the face of a nearly two-decade drought.

Business for Water Stewardship

August 2019 Newsletter

We encourage you to take time this week to think about your business’ water footprint and how BWS can help you maximize your water stewardship.

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Audubon Arizona 

What It's Like to Catch and Band a Yuma Ridgway’s Rail

It’s a hot evening, and the mosquitos near the marsh are terrible. But, it’s worth it to try and band the elusive Yuma Ridgway’s Rails on the Gila River—for science, and because I love seeing these birds up close. We listen closely for their “Kek” calls.

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Western Resource Advocates 

The Drought Contingency Plan is authorized. What’s next for the Colorado River Basin

Can we make the changes needed to avoid crisis on the Colorado River? 

American Rivers

Ranching in the new normal

After 19 years of drought in the Colorado River basin, many experts are calling this prolonged drying out of the southwest by a new name – aridification. Drought implies there’s an end, what if there’s not?