The Arizona Water Banking Authority (AWBA; Water Bank) was established in 1996 to increase utilization of the state's Colorado River entitlement and develop long-term storage credits for the state. AWBA stores or "banks" unused Colorado river water to be used in times of shortage to firm (or secure) water supplies for Arizona. These water supplies help to benefit municipal and industrial users and communities along the Colorado River, fulfill the water management objectives of the state, store water for use as part of water rights settlement agreements among Indian communities, and assist Nevada and California through interstate water banking. Through these mechanisms, the AWBA aids in ensuring long-term water supplies for Arizona.
Each year, the AWBA pays the delivery and storage costs to bring Colorado River water into central and southern Arizona through the Central Arizona Project canal. The water is stored underground in existing aquifers (direct recharge) or is used by irrigation districts in lieu of pumping groundwater (indirect or in-lieu recharge). For each acre-foot stored, the AWBA accrues credit that can be redeemed in the future when Arizona's communities or neighboring states need this backup water supply.
The next meeting of the Arizona Water Banking Authority is scheduled for Wednesday, March 18, 2015 at 10:00 a.m.
Governor Doug Ducey has announced the appointment of Thomas Buschatzke as Director of the Arizona Department of Water Resources. In this capacity, Mr. Buschatzke will also serve as Chair of the AWBA. Mr. Buschatzke was previously a member of the AWBA when he held the position of a person who represents an entity that holds a CAP Municipal and Industrial subcontract (January 2009 to July 2011). We welcome Mr. Buschatzke back to the Commission.
Pursuant to A.R.S. § 38-431.02(A)(1), all public notices of meetings of the AWBA Commission and any of its subcommittees will be physically posted at the Arizona Department of Water Resources, 3550 North Central Avenue, near the tower elevators on the second floor, Phoenix, Arizona, which is open to the public Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., except legal holidays and state furlough days. AWBA Commission meetings will also be electronically posted to this website under Meetings.
CR River photo by Alan Vernon