Contacts - Delta Water Trust
Listen Up - Podcast
On Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, a panel discussion followed a special screening of WATERSHED. Click below to listen to the podcast. Note - the podcast begins with the last 3 minutes of the film, then syncs directly into the panel discussion. Moderated by Nina Trasoff About one hour in length.
Featured Video - Delta Water Trust
March 26 - Actor-director Robert Redford, a longtime environmental activist, is hoping his star power will spread the word about the Colorado River system, which conservationists believe is endangered by decades of development and global warming. Redford has teamed with his son Jamie on a new documentary film about the threat. They sat down with Rob Muir in Washington.
Join our select group of Hummingbird Circle members who have stepped up their giving to support the vital work of the Sonoran Institute.
Colorado River Delta Water Trust
In 2008, the Sonoran Institute, Pronatura Noroeste, and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) partnered to create and manage the Colorado River Delta Water Trust, a mechanism by which water can be secured and dedicated to the Delta in perpetuity.
As Mexico’s first water trust dedicated to acquiring and leasing water for environmental purposes, the Trust is playing a key role in the restoration of the Colorado River Delta. It not only provides the mechanism to acquire water for restoration of priority conservation sites, but it is also facilitating the return of freshwater flows to the Colorado River in Mexico.
The Delta Water Trust is crucial to achieving our conservation goals to protect and enhance tens of thousands of acres of vital riparian, wetland, and estuarine habitat and to restore base flows to the mainstem of the Colorado River, which will ultimately re- connect the river to the sea.
Our collective long-term goal is to acquire at least 50,000 acre-feet of water for the Colorado River Delta. In the short-term, we hope to acquire 10,000 acre-feet over the next five years.
The Water Trust and Minute 319
As of November 2012, the Delta Water Trust’s significance has become even more apparent. Minute 319, the first collaborative commitment by Mexico and the United States to dedicate water to the Colorado River for environmental purposes, relies on the Delta Water Trust to acquire a portion of this water.
As part of this landmark agreement, the Sonoran Institute, Pronatura Noroeste, and Environmental Defense Fund are required to secure one-third of the total flow that will be allocated to the Colorado River in Mexico, while Mexico and the U.S. will contribute the remaining two-thirds of the flows. This coalition of NGOs will use the Trust to fulfill their water delivery commitments established by Minute 319.
Thank you in advance for helping us give life back to the Colorado River Delta.
The Sonoran Institute, Pronatura Noroeste, Environmental Defense Fund, The Nature Conservancy, and the Redford Center (producers of the film Watershed) are involved in this joint effort and are committed to securing water for the Colorado River Delta through the Water Trust.
Donations to the Delta Water Trust are processed by Sonoran Institute, and funds received are put toward water acquisitions for the Delta. All water purchased is in perpetuity, so your donation is a long-term, meaningful investment that delivers lasting conservation results in the Colorado River Delta.
U.S. and Mexico Sign Deal on Sharing the Colorado River - New York Times
November 20, 2012 (CORONADO, Calif.) — The governments of the United States and Mexico signed an agreement on Tuesday to overhaul how the two countries share and manage water from the Colorado River, which provides water to more than 33 million people in seven states and Mexico.
Under the agreement, the two countries will share in both surpluses and water shortages. During drought years in the United States, less water will be sent to Mexico. In exchange, during years of plenty, Mexico will be allowed to store some of its water north of its border. Read the full New York Times article here.
The Colorado River Delta Blues
March 25, 2012 - River deltas are among the most biologically productive ecosystems on Earth, and for millions of years the delta of the Colorado River was no exception. After a 1,450-mile journey from its headwaters in the Rocky Mountains south into Mexico, the Colorado sustained verdant marshes teeming with life before emptying into the aquatic Eden of the upper Gulf of California. Click here to read the LA Times Article.
Watershed Press Release
March 22, 2012 – On the heels of World Water Day (March 22nd), the Redford Center and Kontent Films are pleased to announce the World Premiere of WATERSHED: Exploring a New Water Ethic for the New Westat the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital on March 24, 2012 at the National Museum of American History at 3 pm. The film will be introduced by Robert Redford and will be followed by a panel discussion on the urgency of the problem in the Colorado River Basin and what can be done. Click here to read the release.
Relief for a Parched Delta - New York Times
April 15, 2013 (CUCAPÁ EL MAYOR, Mexico) — Germán Muñoz looked out at the river before him and talked about the days when dolphins swam here, 60 miles from the sea.
“The wave made noise like a train,” he said, describing the tides that would roll up the Colorado River from the Gulf of California and then a mile or so up this tributary, past his family’s land. “There would be all kinds of fish jumping, very happy. And then the dolphins would come, chasing the fish.”
That was in the 1950s, when the Colorado still flowed regularly to the gulf — as it had for tens of thousands of years, washing sand and silt down from the Rocky Mountains to form a vast and fertile delta. In the last half-century, thanks to dams that throttled the Colorado and diverted its water to fuel the rise of the American West, the river has effectively ended at the Mexican border. The Colorado delta, once a lush network of freshwater and marine wetlands and meandering river channels and a haven for fish, migrating birds and other wildlife, is largely a parched wasteland.