The Western Colorado Area Office is responsible for providing or overseeing the operation, management, and maintenance of five projects in the San Juan River Basin: Florida, Mancos, Pine River, Hammond, and the Navajo Unit of the Colorado River Storage Project. Together, these Reclamation projects provide over three million acre-feet of water storage and serve approximately 453,382 acres of land with irrigation water in western Colorado and northwestern New Mexico. This valuable water also provides recreation opportunities, municipal and industrial supplies, hydropower, flood control, and benefits for fish and wildlife including endangered fish.
The Western Colorado Area Office plays an important role in fulfilling the Upper Colorado Region's responsibility for managing and protecting water and associated resources including endangered species. WCAO has significant involvement in two recovery implementation programs for endangered fish: the Upper Colorado River Endangered Fish Recovery Program and the San Juan River Basin Recovery Implementation Program. The actions of these programs assist in the recovery of endangered fish while allowing water development to continue.