An initiative of the Center for Environmental Journalism at the University of Colorado Boulder

Troubled Waters

The Trump administration’s new definition of “waters of the United States” dramatically shrinks federal protection of many wetlands and waterways under the Clean Water Act. The rule change cuts red tape for farmers and developers but could threaten ecosystems and drinking water, especially in the arid West.

Hundreds of San Luis Valley farm wells at risk as state shortens deadline to...

Colorado's top water regulator is warning that a decision on whether hundreds of farm wells will be shut off to help save the Rio Grande River could come much sooner than expected.

City water from wilderness

Against fierce opposition, thirsty cities near Denver plan to draw water from Colorado River headwaters in the Holy Cross Wilderness. Jerd Smith reports for The Water Desk.

The delicate dance of Dillon Reservoir during spring runoff

Managing how water moves from one side of the Continental Divide to the other requires cautious timing and accurate forecasting.

Colorado AG, top water quality regulator vow to challenge new Clean Water Act rule

Though many agricultural interests and water utilities support the new Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule, as it is known, Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser and Patrick Pfaltzgraff, director of the state’s Water Quality Control Division, said they will take legal action to protect streams that are no longer subject to federal oversight.

Crystal River Ranch near Carbondale seeks to preserve water rights tied to potential dams,...

Are junior water rights to an oversubscribed river enough to justify two reservoirs on a farm? One Colorado rancher is about to find out.

Mobile-home residents stuck in a regulatory roundabout

It's unclear whether a new law could improve water quality in the Eagle River Village park, but legislators want to pressure owners to do more.

Small streams and wetlands are key parts of river networks – here’s why they...

The Trump administration's new rule ends federal protection under the Clean Water Act for many small streams and wetlands. But a scientist argues these are critical parts of river systems.

Meet the veteran insider who’s shepherding Gov. Newsom’s plan to bring climate resilience to...

Former journalist Nancy Vogel explains how the draft California Water Resilience Portfolio came together and why it’s expected to guide future state decisions
lake mead photo

Can a grand vision or incremental change solve the Colorado River's challenges?

With talks looming on a new operating agreement for the river, a debate has emerged over the best approach to address its challenges.