WaterSMART Cooperative Watershed Management Program Phase I
The U.S. Department of the Interior’s (Department) WaterSMART (Sustain and Manage America’s Resources for Tomorrow) Program provides a framework for Federal leadership and assistance to stretch and secure water supplies for future generations in support of the Department’s priorities. Through WaterSMART, the Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) leverages Federal and nonFederal funding to work cooperatively with states, Tribes, and local entities as they plan for and implement actions to increase water supply sustainability through investments in existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts.
WaterSMART’s Cooperative Watershed Management Program (CWMP) provide support for priorities identified in Presidential Executive Order (E.O.) 14008: Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad and aligned with other priorities, such as those identified in E.O. 13985: Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government. Environmental Water Resources Projects also support the goals of the Interagency Drought Relief Working Group established in March 2021 and the National Drought Resiliency Partnership.
Drought conditions across the Western United States (West) impact a wide range of communities and sectors, including agriculture, cities, Tribes, the environment, recreation, hydropower producers, and others. The West is experiencing its worst drought this century—historic in both duration and severity—threatening to kill crops, spark wildfires, and harm public health. As of July 2021, the U.S. Drought Monitor indicates that more than 93% of the land in nine of the Western states is in drought conditions, and nearly 60% of the area is experiencing extreme or exceptional drought. Through WaterSMART, Reclamation provides financial assistance to water managers for projects that seek to conserve and use water more efficiently and accomplish other benefits that contribute to sustainability in the Western United States. Through the CWMP, Reclamation provides funding to watershed groups to encourage diverse stakeholders to form local solutions to address their water management needs. By providing this funding Reclamation promotes water reliability and cooperation between stakeholders to reduce conflict, facilitate solutions to complex water issues, and stretch limited water supplies.
Applicants eligible to receive an award as a New Watershed Group include states, Indian Tribes, local and special districts (e.g., irrigation and water districts), local governmental entities, interstate organizations, and non-profit organizations. To be eligible, applicants must also meet all the following requirements:
• Significantly affect or be affected by the quality or quantity of water in a watershed
• Be capable of promoting the sustainable use of water resources
• Be located in one of the following states or territories: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico
In order to be eligible to receive an award as an Existing Watershed Group, the applicant must be an eligible entity as described immediately above and must be either:
1. An Existing Watershed Group, (i.e., a grassroots, non-regulatory legal entity that otherwise meets the definition of a watershed group)
2. A participant in an Existing Watershed Group that meets the definition of a watershed group (A watershed group is a self-sustaining, non-regulatory, consensus-based group that is composed of a diverse array of stakeholders, which may include, but is not limited to, private property owners, non-profit organizations, Federal, state, or local agencies, and tribes.)
Total Amount Available:
March 31, 2022
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