News Release Archive

WaterSMART Basin Study Applicants Sought for 2014

Media Contact: Peter Soeth, 303-445-3615,

For Release: November 20, 2013

WASHINGTON - The Bureau of Reclamation is seeking applications from entities interested in participating in the Basin Studies program for 2014. Basin studies are conducted throughout the West as part of Reclamation’s role in the Department of the Interior’s WaterSMART initiative, which helps to provide water managers better information to make decisions about water use. Interested non-Federal entities wishing to participate in the selection process for the 2014 Basin Studies program should submit a short letter of interest to their respective Reclamation regional office by Dec. 20, 2013.

Through Basin Studies, Reclamation works with state and local partners to conduct comprehensive water supply and demand studies of river basins in the western United States. Reclamation anticipates funding two to three studies in 2013.

Basin Studies include four main elements:

  • Projections of water supply and demand, including the risks of climate change.
  • Analysis of how existing water and power infrastructure will perform in response to changing water realities.
  • Development of adaptation and mitigation strategies to improve operations and infrastructure in order to supply adequate water in the future.
  • Trade-off analysis of the strategies identified and findings and recommendations as appropriate.

Entities must contribute at least 50 percent of the total costs as cash or in-kind services. This is not a financial assistance program, and Reclamation's share of the study costs will only be used to support work done by Reclamation or its contractors.

Reclamation’s regional office staff will review all letters of interest. Those selected for consideration will then work with Reclamation to develop a joint study proposal for evaluation and prioritization by a Reclamation review committee.

The WaterSMART Program focuses on improving water conservation, sustainability and helping water resource managers make sound decisions about water use. It identifies strategies to ensure that this and future generations will have sufficient supplies of clean water for drinking, economic activities, recreation and ecosystem health. The program also identifies adaptive measures to address climate change and its impact on future water demands.

To learn more about WaterSMART Basin Studies please visit

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation's second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

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