Governor Polis Statement on Six-State Consensus on Colorado River Conservation

Monday, January 30, 2023

DENVER - Governor Jared Polis released a statement today following the announcement that six states of the Colorado River reached consensus on criteria for the US Bureau of Reclamation to consider to manage Lake Powell and Lake Mead.

“I am encouraged today that six states came to an agreement on potential mechanisms to better manage the critical reservoirs on the Colorado River,” said Colorado Governor Jared Polis. “Increased drought, climate change, and overuse has led to less water in our reservoirs. More must be done to protect the system, and although we did not cause this crisis, I am proud that Colorado is part of the solution." 

While the Consensus-Based Modeling Alternative still needs approval from the US Bureau of Reclamation, the Governor appreciates the recognition that significant actions must be taken in the Lower Basin States to preserve the system.

“In Colorado, we will continue to implement the  Upper Basin States’ 5 point plan and pursue voluntary and compensated options to do our part to contribute to the long-term solutions needed on the Colorado River.  For future negotiations, Colorado’s door remains open for all seven basin states to come together to forge a new path -  one which acknowledges the river's limitations while recognizing that there are opportunities for every state to thrive, grow and provide for future generations.  I commend our own Colorado River Commissioner, Rebecca Mitchell, Department of Natural Resources Executive Director Dan Gibbs, and the other five basin states who recognized the best path forward is to work collaboratively across the Basin,” Governor Polis added.