Keys announces water 2025 challenge grant program for western states

Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner John Keys announced on April 26 a new Water 2025 Challenge Grant Program that seeks proposals for cooperative projects between Western state governments and the Bureau of Reclamation to make more efficient use of existing water supplies in the region.

"The Water 2025 initiative recognizes that state government agencies have a leading role in avoiding future water supply crises," Keys said. "The Challenge Grant Program for Western States will specifically help state water agencies respond to this challenge."

The program is focused on achieving the goals identified in Secretary Norton's Water 2025 initiative to avoid crises and conflict in the West, particularly the development and use of water markets, structural modifications that will conserve water and improve water management, and other approaches. Among these measures are the use of analytical tools that will help states better administer or more efficiently manage water rights, comply with interstate compacts, or otherwise stretch scarce water supplies.

The Challenge Grant Program for Western States is similar to the Water 2025 Challenge Grant Program. However, in the new program announced today, eligible applicants are limited to state government water management agencies and authorities in the western United States, as identified in the Reclamation Act of June 17, 1902, as amended and supplemented. The regular Water 2025 Challenge Grant Program, which is open to local government, municipal and private irrigation districts and water associations as well as tribal water authorities, will continue as established.

The deadline for submitting proposals for the new Challenge Grant Program for Western States is June 10, 2005. The selections and awards are scheduled to be announced by August. Reclamation may make additional awards at a later date, depending on the availability of funds.

Priority consideration will be given to those projects with practical applications that will reduce the likelihood of conflict over water and can be completed within 24 months from the date of award.

The Request for Proposals for the Water 2025 Challenge Grant Program for Western States is available online at (keyword search: Water 2025). Additional information about the Water 2025 Challenge Grant Program for Western States is available at

This article originally appeared in the 04/01/2005 issue of Environmental Protection.

Featured Webinar