Sustainability in the Upper Colorado River Basin: A Struggle Between Water Resource Use and Remnants of the Natural Ecosystem
Date of Award
Undergraduate Capstone Project
Master of Applied Science
University College, Environmental Policy and Management
Environmental Policy & Mgmt
Colorado compact, Colorado river, Endangered Species Act, Sustainability, Upper Colorado endangered fish recovery program, Upper Colorado River Basin, Upper Colorado River Compact, Water resource management
This study evaluated whether development of the Colorado River system has exceeded sustainability by comparing the trends in water use in the Colorado River. Two sustainable areas were identified in the upper basin and one in the lower-- the mainstream Colorado River, Green and Yampa rivers, and the Little Colorado River. These areas are also high priority recovery areas for four endangered fishes and protected by critical habitat provisions of the ESA. Unfortunately, the endangered fishes are declining because of habitat destruction and non-native species. If increasing water demand causes the fishes to go extinct the few sustainable areas will be lost. It will take careful management of the endangered fishes and water users to ensure these areas are maintained.
Copyright is held by the author. Permanently suppressed.
Shinn Haugh, Annette, "Sustainability in the Upper Colorado River Basin: A Struggle Between Water Resource Use and Remnants of the Natural Ecosystem" (2009). University College: Environmental Policy and Management Capstones. 83.