Colorado is a headwaters state. The snow that falls in the Colorado Rocky Mountains provides water to about 5 million Coloradans and people living in 18 other states. The use of the water in our 8 major watersheds is allocated to these users by river compacts like the Colorado River Compact.
The Rockies act like a frozen reservoir. Spring runoff from the snow feeds our streams, rivers, lakes, groundwater and reservoirs—starting points for the West’s water supply. It is then treated, used and returned to evaporate into snow and rain again.
With drought, high population growth and in-migration, there is concern that there may not be enough water to go around in the future.
Water conservation is a critical piece of the Colorado water puzzle.
Utilities, government agencies, non-profits and industry groups work hard to implement and support conservation programs to address their local water demands. We're also working together to advance water conservation programs and technology regionally. Colorado Water Wise brings this water conservation community together.
The Colorado Water Plan, finalized in 2015, is a state-wide effort. It offers ways to implement water supply planning solutions to meet our future water needs while supporting healthy watersheds and the environment; robust recreation and tourism; sustainable cities; and productive agriculture.
The Colorado State University Climate Center is a one-stop-shop for drought information. Find data on precipitation, soil moisture, temperature, reservoir storage levels and more.
Follow the link on the left.
The NRCS Snow Survey Program provides mountain snowpack data and streamflow forecasts for the western United States. Common applications of snow survey products include water supply management, flood control, climate modeling, recreation, and conservation planning.
Follow the link on the left for the current, basin-wide SNOTEL graphs.
Colorado Water Knowledge - this website, all about Colorado Water, is brought to us by the Colorado Water Center at Colorado State University.
Water Education Colorado - an organization dedicated to ensuring a better future for Colorado through water education.
Intermountain West Climate Dashboard - this data dashboard "provides situational awareness of climate, drought and water resources" in our region, and is brought to us by NOAA's Western Water Assessment team.
The Future of Colorado's Water, a Seuss-like Tale, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences – Jeff Lukas presents Colorado's water and future projects from the Colorado Water Assessment using a Dr. Seuss-like rhyme that brings cleverness and smiles despite the subject's gravity. First presented at the National Center of Atmospheric Research on April 16, 2015.