The American West faces serious water challenges. Wide-spread drought, increased populations, aging infrastructure, and environmental requirements all strain existing water and hydropower resources. Adequate and safe water supplies are fundamental to the health, economy, and security of the country. Through WaterSMART, Reclamation will continue to work cooperatively with states, tribes, and local entities as they plan for and implement actions to increase water supply through investments to modernize existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts.
2021 WaterSMART Project Selections Update
As of July 2021, Reclamation has selected 125 projects to be funded with $64.6 million in WaterSMART funding across the western states:
- February 11, 2021, Drought Resiliency Projects selected, $15.4 million for 18 projects in 7 western states.
- March 17, 2021: Water and Energy Efficiency Grants selected, $42.4 million for 55 projects in 13 western states.
- March 25, 2021: Cooperative Watershed Management Program – Phase II Grants selected, $2.1 million for 11 projects in 7 western states.
- April 21, 2021: Drought Response Program – Drought Contingency Planning Grants selected, $809,000 for 5 contingency plans in 3 western states.
- June 1, 2021: Basin Study Program - Water Management Options Pilots selected, $219,496 for 2 projects in central Oregon.
- June 15, 2021: Cooperative Watershed Management Program – Phase I Grants selected, $2.6 million for 27 projects in 12 western states.
- July 1, 2021: Water Marketing Strategy Grants selected, $1.14 million for 7 projects in 4 western states.
See program specific links, at left, for more details.
The Bureau of Reclamation is awarding $1.14 million in WaterSMART Water Marketing Grants to seven projects in California, Colorado, Utah, and Washington. These grants will provide cost-shared financial assistance for the selected entities to develop water marketing strategies to establish or expand water markets or water marketing activities. Read More →.
The Bureau of Reclamation is awarding $2.6 million to 27 communities in the Western United States to establish or expand existing watershed management groups through WaterSMART's Cooperative Watershed Management Program. Each group is eligible for up to $50,000 a year for two years with no federal cost-share required. Read More →.
The Bureau of Reclamation is allocating $219,496 for two pilot projects in Central Oregon. The Central Oregon Irrigation District and East Fork Irrigation District water management pilots will analyze improvements to conserve water for identified needs in their areas. The two districts are providing $232,480 in cost-sharing for the two pilot projects. Read More →.
Reclamation seeks comments on updated eligibility and evaluation criteria for three WaterSMART funding opportunities
Reclamation is proposing several changes to the WaterSMART program for 2022. Reclamation is seeking public comment on draft eligibility and evaluation criteria for three funding opportunities within the WaterSMART Program to assist with these changes.
Reclamation proposes updates to the eligibility requirements and evaluation criteria for the Drought Resiliency Projects and Water and Energy Efficiency Grants funding opportunities. Reclamation is also launching a new funding opportunity for Environmental Water Resources Projects. This new funding opportunity will focus on projects that have environmental benefits, are developed as part of a collaborative process, and may be eligible for up to 75% federal funding.
The changes were developed to incorporate recent amendments to the SECURE Water Act (Title IX, Subtitle F of P.L. 111-11), implement priorities identified in Presidential Executive Order 14008: Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad and Executive Order 13985: Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government, and support the goals of the Interagency Drought Relief Working Group established in March 2021.
The comment period has now closed. Comments received by June 18, 2021 are currently under review.
The Bureau of Reclamation is providing $808,912 to five entities in California, Nebraska and Utah to develop a drought contingency plan or update an existing plan. These drought plans will help regions and communities plan for and build long-term resiliency to drought. Read More →.
TThe American West faces serious water challenges. Wide-spread drought, increased populations, aging infrastructure, and environmental requirements all strain existing water and hydropower resources. Adequate and safe water supplies are fundamental to the health, economy, and security of the country. Through WaterSMART, Reclamation will continue to work cooperatively with states, tribes, and local entities to plan for and implement actions to increase water supplies through investments to modernize existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts. Read More →