Water Exchanges: Arizona's Most Recent Innovation in Water Law and Policy

22 Pages Posted: 8 Jun 2018

See all articles by Robert Glennon

Robert Glennon

University of Arizona - Rogers College of Law; PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

Date Written: June 5, 2018

Abstract

The words “Arizona” and “progressive” are seldom used in the same sentence but, when it comes to water, Arizona has a distinguished record of innovation in water law and policy. This article explores novel solutions to water shortages recently developed by Arizona water lawyers and managers. It draws on presentations at an Arizona Water Law conference hosted by the Arizona College of Law Rogers College of Law in December 2017. The recurring tool is water exchanges, that is, the substitution of one type of water for another, such as Colorado River water delivered through the Central Arizona Project for groundwater. Exchanges have become a reliable and valuable tool to solve seemingly intractable engineering challenges.

Lest I be perceived as simply a shill for my adopted State, I’ll also critique some foibles and missteps in water management. Arizona water managers are chasing a rainbow in pursuing “augmentation” in the form of desalination from ocean water off the coast of California or Mexico.

Keywords: water exchanges, desalination, water shortages, augmentation, ocean water, Colorado River Water, Central Arizona Project, groundwater

Suggested Citation

Glennon, Robert, Water Exchanges: Arizona's Most Recent Innovation in Water Law and Policy (June 5, 2018). 8 Arizona Journal of Environmental Law & Policy 1 (2018 Forthcoming); Arizona Legal Studies Discussion Paper No. 18-23. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3191997

Robert Glennon (Contact Author)

University of Arizona - Rogers College of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 210176
Tucson, AZ 85721-0176
United States

PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

2048 Analysis Drive
Suite A
Bozeman, MT 59718
United States

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