April 11, 2023 — For the first time ever, the State of Arizona has launched a “Water Awareness Month” celebration.
According to the state’s Department of Water Resources, Arizona’s record in improving water efficiency and conservation has been successful. The Department notes that despite a population increase of six million residents since 1957, Arizonans are using about the same amount of water now as then.
The Department warns that the Colorado River situation is concerning.
Waves of “atmospheric rivers” washing over California have been newsworthy. Near-record winter moisture drenching parts of the West has delivered positive news, but the benefits are primarily short-term.
The Colorado River system remains in grave danger. In the long term, the State says that for the Southwest’s most crucial river system to overcome crisis, multiple consecutive years of above-average winter moisture are necessary. Shortage declarations persist for the Colorado River states, with “an almost certain chance of ongoing shortages in the foreseeable future.”
According to the Department of Water Resources, the importance of conservation and water awareness cannot be overstated, potentially being more critical now than ever before.
“April was designated Water Awareness Month in the State of Arizona in an Executive Order in 2008 as a call to action for Arizona residents to use water more efficiently, to practice low water-use lifestyles, and to create a culture of conservation to reduce the impact of drought on our natural resources, economy, and quality of life,” said Nemesis Ortiz-Declet, the Department’s Water Awareness Month coordinator.
The State hosts a website that lists the Water Awareness Month festival events scheduled throughout the month of April.