• Mark L. Johnson

Water Woes XVI-Is The Worst Yet To Come?

Tortolita Alliance (TA) attended the Local Drought Impact Group (LDIG) Meeting via Microsoft Team today (May 11, 2022).


LDIG is a bi-monthly gathering of local and state water agencies to discuss latest drought conditions across the state of AZ. Attendees include: TA, Marana Water, Tucson Water, Metro Water, National Weather Service-Tucson, Central Arizona Project (CAP), Arizona Department of Water Resources (ADWR), Pima County Office of Sustainability & Conservation (OSC) and more. The following information was gleaned from the meeting.


62% of Arizona in Severe Drought




Good Monsoon Predicted Which Will Ease Wildfire Threat In July




Colorado River Update

  • Spring Runoff-60% of normal expected

  • Lake Powell-if elevation 3,490 is reached, it will not only impact hydroelectric power generation but also water releases to Lake Mead as by-pass tubes will need to be used that could do damage to dam infrastructure

  • USBR & Basin States-monitoring daily


Shortage Tiers & Emergency Drought Plan Stages


  • Colorado River-Lake Mead Current Elevation-1053 (Shortage Tier 1)

  • Colorado River will most likely be in Shortage Tier 2a in 2023

  • Colorado River will could be in Shortage Tier 2b or Tier 3 (impacts Pima County water agencies-M&I) in 2024

  • Tucson Water-implemented its Drought Emergency Plan Stage 1-voluntary conservation

  • Marana Water-implemented its Drought Emergency Plan Stage 2-voluntary conservation

  • Arizona Water Officials meeting to discuss use of Arizona Water Banking Authority stored groundwater to prepare for Tier 3 shortage cuts