Water: Climate Change and Water
Southwest Climate Change and Water
Most of the Southwest climate region is arid with relatively high temperatures. It has several mountain ranges as well as the Pacific Ocean, which influence climate and water resources in the region.
The lack of rainfall and the prospect of future droughts becoming more severe is a significant concern, especially because the Southwest continues to lead the nation in population growth. For more information about the overall impacts of climate change in the Southwest, in addition to water impacts, visit EPA's main climate change website.
Highlights of EPA and Partner Activities
Through the California Water and Energy Project , (an interagency partnership) as well as the California Financing Coordinating Committee and other regional networks, EPA is leveraging funding to support sustainable water infrastructure and water-use efficiency projects.
The Department of the Interior’s Southwestern Climate Science Center provides scientific information, tools, and techniques that land, water, wildlife, and cultural resource managers can apply to anticipate, monitor, and adapt to climate and ecologically driven responses at regional and local scales.
The Climate Assessment for the Southwest works to improve the region’s ability to respond and adapt to climatic events and climate change. It works collaboratively to promote research with scientists, decision-makers, and educators.
The Western Water Assessment uses a multidisciplinary approach, working with climate, water, and law experts to provide information about natural climate variability and climate change. The organization hopes to assist water-resource decision-makers with its tools, specifically its climate forecasts and regional vulnerability assessments.
- The California Landscape Conservation Cooperative is a partnership between management and science created to inform and promote integrated science, natural science management, and conservation to address impacts of climate change.
The Department of the Interior’s Northeast Climate Science Center provides scientific information, tools, and techniques that land, water, wildlife, and cultural resource managers can apply to anticipate, monitor, and adapt to climate and ecologically driven responses at regional and local scales.
The California Nevada Applications Program provides scientific information, tools, and techniques for anticipating, monitoring, and adapting to climate change.
Climate and Water Strategy
EPA programs in the Southwest region will work with federal, state, tribal, and local partners to protect water quality, increase infiltration, encourage communities and utilities to conduct vulnerability assessments and implement recommendations, and evaluate future drought and flood impacts on water resources and infrastructure resilience.
To learn more about the goals and strategic actions at the regional level, read the EPA water program’s 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change.