The Colorado River Crisis with Andy Mueller
The big news in the West these days is drought, and specifically drought in the Colorado River Basin. In upcoming episodes, we’re going to bring you some really interesting conversations with land stewards who are trying really cool things to deal with the drought, save water, and restore watersheds. But today, we wanted to provide listeners with some of the big picture context and some background to better understand this issue.
To do that, we turned to Andy Mueller. Andy Mueller is the General Manager of the Colorado River District. The Colorado River District is a public body that serves as the principal water policy and planning agency for the Colorado River Basin within the state of Colorado. They provide legal, technical and political representation regarding Colorado River issues for the communities of 15 counties in Northwest Colorado which includes the headwaters of the mighty river itself.
Andy is a veteran water attorney, and a graduate of the University of Colorado Law School’s esteemed program in water law. Before becoming the General Manager at CRD, he spent 22 years in private practice representing agricultural water users on the western slope of Colorado, learning about the issues directly from landowners and producers. Andy recently spoke with Lesli Allison, the executive director at Western Landowners Alliance. Lesli spent 16 years managing a private ranch in the headwaters of the Rio Grande before helping to found WLA in 2012. So she’s no stranger to these issues.
LINKS FROM THIS EPISODE
Colorado River District: https://www.coloradoriverdistrict.org/
Text of the Colorado River Compact: https://www.usbr.gov/lc/region/pao/pdfiles/crcompct.pdf