Water Director Says Tucson Can Handle Water Shortage on Colorado River

Tucson Water Director Tim Thomure says smart, long-term investment and conservation over decades put our community in good shape to deal with possible cuts to our supply of Colorado River water. As part of the Central Arizona Project (CAP), Tucson uses the water to blend with groundwater supplies to extend the life of our aquifer.

The primary symptom of drought on the Colorado River is the water level in Lake Mead. As Lake Mead falls, the likelihood of a shortage declaration increases, which triggers a series of water delivery reductions that mostly affect Arizona.

In a guest column in Sunday's Arizona Daily Star, Thomure says Tucson is prepared to absorb shortages under the existing requirements and under proposed negotiations with Nevada and California to voluntarily reduce their CAP supplies to leave more water in Lake Mead.

"The agreements being negotiated provide a benefit to all of the Colorado River lower basin water users, while minimally impacting our community," Thomure writes. "Our water future is secure and we can continue to grow our economy with confidence - Tucson knows how to thrive in our desert environment."