Dec. 1, 2022
Tribal Water Marketing in the Colorado River’s Future
November 24th marked the 100th anniversary of the Colorado River Compact, the framework that governs the vital water source among the Tribes and seven basin states (Lower Basin: Arizona, California, Nevada; Upper Basin: Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming) that rely on it. But the compact’s centennial marks a moment of extreme uncertainty for the river’s management.
Colorado River Indian Tribes’ (CRIT) potential ability to lease its water rights to off-reservation users would be a significant departure from the first 100 years of Colorado River management. It would carry the benefit of giving CRIT more influence in the future of the river. The potential outcome behooves all those dependent on the Colorado River to consider what responsible use means in the coming decades of shortage.