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Safeguarding our water resources

Photo Credit: Courtesy Lisa Yellow Eagle | SU Legal Dept.



I am thrilled to share a few updates on projects I have been working on to safeguard our water resources. Over the past few months, I have actively participated in initiatives and committees, strengthening our commitment to responsible water management.  

In December, I was honored to attend the Colorado River Water Users Association (CRWUA) with Vice Chairman Lorelei Cloud and technical water staff. CRWUA is held annually to bring together the Upper and Lower Basin stakeholders.  

The theme of the conference was “Constructing a Resilient Future: Rebuilding from the Ground Up.” This theme was very fitting, as many tribal leaders, including Vice Chairman Cloud, highlighted the importance and necessity for tribes and tribal voices to be included in policy-making discussions.  

I am the Tribe’s representative to the Ten Tribes Partnership (TTP). This is a coalition of upper and lower basin tribes that collectively work to elevate tribal voices and concerns regarding the management of the Colorado River. We meet every other month to discuss issues on the Colorado River with tribal updates, guest speakers, and updates from the Bureau of Reclamation.  

The Ten Tribes are coming together to identify shared ground in negotiation principles for the post-2026 Colorado River guidelines. We are working to find areas of agreement, address potential conflicts, and offer mutual support. Our common goal is to have a strong voice for all tribes at the negotiating table. 

On Monday, March 4, I provided an update from our Tribe to the Upper Colorado River Commission (UCRC) during the 306th meeting. The UCRC’s goal is to promote collaboration and allocation of water between the Upper Basin States in addition to compliance with the 1922 Colorado River Compact. Historically, tribes and their senior water rights have been excluded from water management and allocation discussions. It is encouraging to see a positive shift towards tribal inclusion in Colorado River Basin discussions. It is critical for tribes and tribal leaders to be present to ensure that our voices and concerns are elevated. Our presence signifies that we are here, and we are committed to protecting our water.  

I am thankful for the opportunity to represent our Tribe to ensure our seat in shaping policies that directly impact our water resources. Together with other dedicated members, we are crafting solutions that balance the needs of various stakeholders while prioritizing the long-term health of our rivers. 

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