Colorado River Futures Program

With cities, farms, and industry across seven states and two countries competing over river flows that are dwindling due to climate change, the Colorado River Basin faces some serious long-term problems. Fixing them will require a basin-wide vision with broad public support.  But many of the stakeholders essential to building that vision and support – tribes, conservation groups, small-scale farmers, the recreation industry, scientists, economists, fishermen - have a limited voice in the current decision making processes that determine who gets how much water when. Moreover, concern is growing even those with a seat at the table today that durable, basin-wide solutions are elusive.

Carpe Diem West seeks and creates opportunities to bring together key interests in the Colorado River Basin around the premise that long-term solutions will need to be basin-wide in scope, and must address the new climate reality. Working with diverse partners, including experienced practitioners and university-based researchers, Carpe Diem West is working to build an inclusive vision for the Colorado River's future that is durable, equitable, and workable for all interests. 

"Because of Carpe Diem West, and it's positive, broad reaching safe table, new perspectives are being brought to the forefront under a cover for those at the table looking for ideas but perhaps uncomfortable at putting them out there.” 

Eric Kuhn General Manager, Colorado River Water Conservation District

Background Information 
Colorado River Solutions 

"Mapping the River: Priorities for Action Beyond the Colorado River Basin Study" Carpe Diem West & The University of Montana, March 2014

"Governing Like A River Basin: Options for Expanded Stakeholder Engagement in the Colorado River Basin,Carpe Diem West & The University of Montana, December 2011

"Thinking Like a River Basin: Leaders' Perspectives on Options and Opportunities in Colorado River Management", Carpe Diem West & The University of Montana, April 2011

Dr. Doug Kenney's 2010 CRWUA Presentation Video

Colorado River Law and Policy FAQs

University of Colorado Western Water Policy Program

University of Montana Center for Natural Resources & Environmental Policy

Bureau of Reclamation Colorado River Basin Water Supply & Demand Study

Colorado River Water Users Association