Arizona gets $25 million in federal funding to combat drought

Apr 5, 2024, 8:00 PM | Updated: 8:43 pm

PHOENIX — At least $25 million in federal funding is heading to Arizona to combat drought in the southwest desert.

Funding provided through the Biden Administration’s Investing in America agenda is going to two areas: Topock Marsh and the Yuma East Wetlands.

“Protecting these wetlands is important to the local communities as well as to the greater health of the lower basin of the Colorado River,” Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Camille Calimlim Touton said in a Department of Interior press release on Wednesday.

“Through historic resources … we have the opportunity to invest in projects like these to combat the impacts of long-term drought for current and future generations.”

Here’s what the federal funds will do for Arizona drought mitigation

The Yuma East Wetlands will use $5 million for infrastructure upgrades, including transitioning from diesel to electrical pumps, extending concrete canals and installing electrical power in the area.

Funding for this project aims to preserve the marsh, ensuring its availability for public recreation for future generations.

Further north, the 4,000-acre Topock Marsh in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge will receive $20 million.

The funds will be used for various projects, including the installation of the new screw pumps, building a new water control structure and replacing a deteriorating concrete canal with 3 miles of pipeline.

The Topock Marsh is home to the endangered southern willow flycatcher and contains the only population of Northern Mexican Garter snakes found along the lower Colorado River.

Over $8.3 billion is being invested through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law during a five-year span for water infrastructure projects, such as rural water, water storage, water purification, conservation and dam safety, according to the release.

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Arizona gets $25 million in federal funding to combat drought