Budget change threatens future of #ColoradoRiver #COriver

Glen Canyon Dam

From The Arizona Daily Sun (Scott Buffon):

The Bureau of Reclamation’s $23 million budget will be transferred to the United States Treasury next fiscal year, impacting the continued health of the Colorado River and the many entities that depend on it.

The funds originally come from the power revenue created by the Glen Canyon Dam, which was then retooled by the bureau to ensure the safety of the water downstream. Without funding, the water, aquatic life and archaeological sites in the Colorado River area will be left unprotected and unmonitored. This change could affect Native American tribes including Havasupai, Hualapai, Hopi and Navajo, seven states of the Colorado River Basin and two states in Mexico — all places that the river runs through.

The Office of Management and Budget initiated the movement of funds from the bureau to the treasury.

In the meantime, the bureau is examining options to support their projects until a permanent solution is found.

“Reclamation is not going to walk away from these programs,” said Marlon Duke, spokesperson for the Bureau’s Upper Basin Region. “We’re working with our stakeholders and our partners to find ways to continue to do the work to find a more permanent solution.”

According to the Bureau, the Grand Canyon Protection Act of 1992 originally diverted the $23 million from the treasury to the Glen Canyon Dam. In diverting the money, the dam was intended to “protect, mitigate adverse impacts to and improve the values for which Grand Canyon National Park and Glen Canyon National Recreation Area were established.”

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