Western States Water Council

A Voice for Water in the West since 1965

What We Do

Our mission is to ensure that the West has an adequate, secure, and sustainable supply of water of suitable quality to meet its diverse economic and environmental needs now and in the future.

Western Water Policy Positions

Raise water as a critical public policy priority.  Policy positions are vetted with the governors, adopted by the Council, and promoted on behalf of Western States.

Weekly Newsletter

Report and curate state and federal news on water-related issues, as well as other activities and events.

Federal Reserved Tribal and Non-Tribal Water Rights

Support authorization and funding of negotiated settlements between tribes, states, and federal agencies to resolved unquantified tribal and non-tribal water claims.

Water Infrastructure

Recognize and promote active asset management, including consistent funding to address aging infrastructure challenges, future water supply, and water and wastewater treatment needs.

Sharing of State-Level Water Data

Develop and grow the Water Data Exchange (WaDE) Program that streamlines access to water rights and water use data, water quality and other water related databases.

Enhance State and Federal Relationships and Encourage Collaboration

Serve as a forum for Interstate and State/Federal dialogue and action on emerging and ongoing water issues with our Western States Federal Agency Support Team (WestFAST).

Water Quality-Quantity Nexus

Recognize and promote efforts to better manage and balance the interrelationships between the development and allocation of water resources, wastewater treatment, and water quality.

Water-Related Observing Systems and Data

Support the maintenance and expansion of critical observing systems and promote innovation related to the monitoring and reporting of water-related parameters.

#468 – Rural Water Supply Project / Infrastructure Needs

Position #468 - June 25, 2021 WHEREAS, in the West, water is indeed our “life blood,” a vital and scarce resource the availability of which has and continues to circumscribe growth, development, our economic and environmental well-being and quality of life; and...

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#467 – The “Dividing the Waters” Program

Position #467 - March 25, 2021 WHEREAS, the Dividing the Waters Program of the National Judicial College has served western judges overseeing complex water litigation for more than 20 years, providing information and training resources on water law and water conflicts...

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Rural and Tribal Water Infrastructure

The Western States Water Council, Native American Rights Fund, and National Congress of American Indians sent a joint letter to various Congressional committees, urging them to prioritize federal funding to meet urgent tribal and rural water infrastructure needs as they consider potential infrastructure funding packages.

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House hearing on water resources

On November 4, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife held a remote hearing on the following bills: (1) H.Res. 320 recognizing the critical importance of access to reliable, clean drinking water for Native Americans and Alaska Natives...

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WRP Webinar: Groundwater-Surface Water Interface

On October 26, 2021, the Western Regional Partnership (WRP) hosted a Western Water Security webinar on Groundwater-Surface Water Interface. Speakers from Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Utah offered different perspectives on the...

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WaDE 5-Year Work Plan: 2022-2026 (Draft)

Background The Water Data Exchange (WaDE) Program began in 2011 under a subcontract with the Western Governors Association (WGA), as a cooperative effort between WSWC and the Sandia National Labs, with funding from the Department of Energy made available under the...

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The Western States Water Council is the preeminent water policy organization in the western U.S. representing as it does 18 western states. From influential positions on federal rules and legislation to support of Landsat missions intended to acquire important water use information, the Council serves it member states like no other entity. My 18-year membership with the Council is one of the most memorable experiences of my service as Wyoming State Engineer.

Pat Tyrrell

Former Wyoming State Engineer

I find the Council to be a provocative forum to discuss how State water supply and water quality program should interact. Western perspectives highlight the unique and confounding aspects of managing water quality in ways that defy uniform application of the Clean Water Act. And there may be no greater champion of the importance of water data programs of the USGS and NRCS than the WSWC.

Tom Stiles

Kansas Dept. of Health & Environment

The Western States Water Council is recognized as a national leader in developing and influencing national and western water policy, while serving as the water arm for the Western Governors’ Association.  The Council provides an excellent forum for states and federal agencies to discuss water issues of mutual interest.  I know that my time on the Council certainly enhanced my ability as a leader on state water issues.

Garland Erbele

Former North Dakota State Engineer

Contact Us

Western States Water Council Office

682 East Vine Street, Suite 7
Murray, UT 84107-5501

(801) 685-2555

(801) 685-2559  (fax)


Julie Groat
Administrative Assistant