June 26, 2018

Cortez Masto Prioritizes Water Conservation in Energy & Water Appropriations Bill

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) released the following statement on the passage of the 2019 Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill, which includes language Cortez Masto proposed to reauthorize for the Colorado River System Conservation Pilot Program (SCPP).

“The Colorado River is vital to the health and well-being of Nevada’s families and Nevada’s economy. I am proud to help guarantee the continuation of the System Conservation Pilot Program. The SCPP is an important tool in ensuring that the Colorado River continues to meet the water and environmental needs of both cities and rural communities throughout the Basin.” 

“2018 has been a near-record dry year, and the forecasts for the river look bleak. There is a dire need for a voluntary water management program that works for states, water users, and the environment, and helps steady water levels in Lake Mead.”

BACKGROUND:

The System Conservation Pilot Program is a collective effort by water districts and the federal government to fund voluntary water savings efforts and water conservation projects that, in turn, create water for the entire system. The Pilot Program was set to expire this September, and Senator Cortez Masto’s Amendment extends the widely supported program through 2022. 

Senator Cortez Masto’s amendment also increases the funding ceiling for the Secure Water Act, which focuses on improving water conservation and helping water-resource managers make sound decisions about water use. 

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