On Aug. 16, the United States Bureau of Reclamation (“Reclamation”) declared a Tier 2a shortage for the Colorado River in 2023. While this reflects accelerating declines in Colorado River flows, Phoenix customer deliveries will not be impacted by this announcement, according to city officials.

In June, Reclamation stated that to save the Colorado River system additional cuts across all Basin States will be necessary. However, the announcement did not include a Basin State plan to reduce demand or a federal unilateral action to save the Colorado River.

Phoenix continues to advocate for additional collaboration throughout the Colorado River Basin and has demonstrated its commitment to sustainability and stability. In 2022, Phoenix voluntarily gave up 23% of its available Colorado River entitlements to stabilize water levels in Lake Mead and help Pinal farmers who lost access to Colorado River supplies.

“Phoenix stands by its commitment to provide water to 1.7 million customers and is taking proactive actions to ensure water deliveries and reduce dependence on the Colorado River,” according to city officials. Phoenix will soon complete the Drought Pipeline Project at a cost of over $300 million, which will move alternate supplies to North Phoenix customers who rely on Colorado River water. Phoenix is continuously improving infrastructure and conducting ecosystem restoration in the Salt River system, which provides 60% of the city’s water. Water recycling and efficiency improvements are also important solutions.

Phoenix declared a Stage 1 Water Alert and activated its Drought Management Plan in early summer 2022 and is asking customers to voluntarily reduce their water use.
• Since most of the city’s water use is outdoors, watering landscape correctly is one of the easiest and most effective ways to conserve water. If you have grass, be sure to water it no more than twice a week, even during the summer.
• Finding and fixing leaking faucets and toilets is the simplest way to reduce indoor water use. Visually check each faucet and toilet for leaks at least once a month.
• Choose water efficient landscaping, fixtures, and appliances when building or updating a home.

To learn more, visit phoenix.gov/drought.