About Us - Mission/Vision

Map of Reclamation RegionsEstablished in 1902, the Bureau of Reclamation is best known for the dams, powerplants, and canals it constructed in the 17 western states. These water projects led to homesteading and promoted the economic development of the West. Reclamation has constructed more than 600 dams and reservoirs including Hoover Dam on the Colorado River and Grand Coulee on the Columbia River.

Today, we are the largest wholesaler of water in the country. We bring water to more than 31 million people, and provide one out of five Western farmers (140,000) with irrigation water for 10 million acres of farmland that produce 60% of the nation's vegetables and 25% of its fruits and nuts.

Reclamation is also the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States. Our 53 powerplants annually provide more than 40 billion kilowatt hours generating nearly a billion dollars in power revenues and produce enough electricity to serve 3.5 million homes.

Picture of Hoover DamToday, Reclamation is a contemporary water management agency with a Strategic Plan outlining numerous programs, initiatives and activities that will help the Western States, Native American Tribes and others meet new water needs and balance the multitude of competing uses of water in the West. Our mission is to assist in meeting the increasing water demands of the West while protecting the environment and the public's investment in these structures. We place great emphasis on fulfilling our water delivery obligations, water conservation, water recycling and reuse, and developing partnerships with our customers, states, and Native American Tribes, and in finding ways to bring together the variety of interests to address the competing needs for our limited water resources.

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Mission Statement

The mission of the Bureau of Reclamation is to manage, develop, and protect water and related resources in an environmentally and economically sound manner in the interest of the American public.

Vision Statement

Through leadership, use of technical expertise, efficient operations, responsive customer service and the creativity of people, Reclamation will seek to protect local economies and preserve natural resources and ecosystems through the effective use of water.

The mission of the Bureau of Reclamation is to manage, develop, and protect water and related resources in an environmentally and economically sound manner in the interest of the American public.

The Commissioner's plan for how Reclamation will attain its vision:

  • Directing our leadership and technical expertise in water resources development and in the efficient use of water through initiatives including conservation, reuse, and research.

  • Protecting the public and the environment through the adequate maintenance and appropriate operation of Reclamation's facilities.

  • Managing Reclamation's facilities to fulfill water user contracts and protect and/or enhance conditions for fish, wildlife, land, and cultural resources.

  • Working with Reclamation's customers and stakeholders to achieve mutual objectives.

  • Assisting the Secretary in fulfilling Indian Trust responsibilities.

  • Implementing innovative, sound business practices with timely and cost-effective, measurable results.

  • Promoting a culturally diverse workforce which encourages excellence, creativity, and achievement.
  • Understanding and striving to attain our vision are critical to effectively implement the Government Performance and Results Act. GPRA was enacted in 1993 to improve public confidence in Federal agency performance by holding agencies accountable for achieving program results; and to improve congressional decision making by clarifying and stating program performance goals, measures, and costs "up front." Basic GPRA requirements include:

    • 6-year Strategic Plan
    • Annual Performance Plans
    • Annual Performance Reports
Last Updated: 3/29/17