Hydrological Science – In language fit for a novice or an expert

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Cloudy Sky Over Colorado River

Whether you’re an aspiring hydrologist or a seasoned water manager, there’s one reference tool you’re going to want on your bookshelf of treasured resources – the new Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology State of the Science Report!

Sure to be a “best seller” amongst those looking toward the future of the Colorado River Basin, this comprehensive document integrates nearly 800 peer-reviewed studies and reports to provide a baseline assessment and description of the data, technical tools and research relevant for water resource management in the Basin. The report was recently released by the Western Water Assessment team out of the University of Colorado.

The report was collaboratively funded by CAP and other basin partners – Arizona Department of Water Resources, California’s Six Agency Committee, Colorado River Water Conservation District, Colorado Water Conservation Board, Denver Water, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission, Southern Nevada Water Authority, Utah Division of Water Resources, Wyoming State Engineer’s Office and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

“This document is for anyone to pick up to get a fundamental understanding of the past, current and future climate and hydrology of the Colorado River Basin and how ongoing changes to both are being managed,” says Mohammed Mahmoud, PhD, CAP senior policy analyst. “It’s also a document that experts can dive into for specific chapters on topics in which they have a keen interest.”

According to the report language, the goal is to “facilitate more accurate short- and mid-term forecasts and more meaningful long-term projections of basin hydroclimate and system conditions.”

In other words, it’s a reference document for all – the novice who wants a basic understanding and the expert who wants more nuanced information on methods, tools and data. This common frame of reference is critical as stakeholders begin to determine the future of the Colorado River Basin in the face of drought and climate change.

In the face of uncertainty, this State of the Science report couldn’t have come at a better time!