2016 Candidate Forum Questions

 On August 6, 2016 CWAG will hold a candidate forum for candidates for LD 1 House & Senate and for Yavapai County Supervisor in Districts 1, 2, 4 & 5. We sent the candidates the questions in advance. See our video archive after 8/6/16 to watch the forum.

To learn more, view a pdf of the questions. 

2015 Candidate Forum Questions


 On August 1, 2015, CWAG will hold a candidate forum for Prescott mayoral and council candidates. We sent the candidates the questions in advance. See our video archive to watch the forum.

 To learn more, view a pdf of the questions. 

2014 Candidate Forum Questions


 On August 2, 2014, CWAG will hold a candidate forum for Legislative District 1 candidates. We sent the candidates the questions in advance. See our video archive to watch the forum.

 To learn more, view a pdf of the questions. 

Water Conservation through pricing and markets

Presentation by John Danforth to CWAG. Slides show that market forces can allocate water more efficiently, promote conservation, and help protect the environment. View Document.

Rethinking the Contribution of Water Conservation

Presentation to CWAG by Linda Stitzer of Western Resource Advocates advocating a greater role for water conservation. View Document.

Public/Private Partnerships

Prescott and Prescott Valley have explored the possibility of a public-private partnership (PPP) to assist in the financing, construction, and/or operation of the proposed water pipeline. Dr William Kendig comments on this scheme. View Document.

Response to Pollack Report: Kendig

Most thoughtful people are concerned that the lack of adequate water in the area will have significant implications for the local economy and, in a related fashion, will also impact the fiscal situation of area governments. The subject paper, prepared by Elliott D. Pollack & Company for The Central Arizona Partnership (a non-governmental group), was developed to provide specific information regarding the economic and fiscal impact of the pipeline through the year 2050. It appears that study is meant to provide citizens, business representatives and others with information for making decisions. The study has significant problems that reduce its use in decision making: (1) the foundation upon which the study is built, and (2) technical issues. View Document.

2009 Water Balance Calculations for the Prescott AMA

Charts and graphs describing the water balance and decreases for the Prescott AMA, by Doug McMillan and Pete Kroopnick. View Document. 

Arizona's Changing Climate

Arizona's climate is changing. It's becoming warmer and drier. Prescott average daily temperatures have increased by seven degrees since 1910. Observed increases in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere caused by the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation, imply global, and northern Arizona, temperatures will continue to increase through the first half of our new century due to the Green- house Effect and its associated global warming. By Dale Meyer, CWAG Science Committee. View Document.

Climate Change in Yavapai County

In April, 2008, the Citizens Water Advocacy Group (CWAG) co-hosted a presentation by Michael A. Crimmins, Associate Professor at University of Arizona, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences; and an Agricultural Extension Specialist. He talked about past and projected global climate change, how it is shown to be human-induced, and focused on the present and future effects of climate change on Arizona and Yavapai County. This is a summary written by Howard Mechanic. View Document.

Correspondence: CWAG and AZ Department of Water Resources Director Herb Guenther

CWAG to Guenther 10-18-07
Guenther to CWAG 12-10-07
CWAG to Guenther 1-10-08

CWAG Review of the PrAMA Third Management Plan

The water supply for the Prescott Tri-cities area is primarily groundwater pumped from the aquifer system that underlies the Prescott Active Management Area (PAMA). A state-mandated goal of the PAMA is to achieve safe yield by the year 2025. The state describes a scenario for achieving safe yield through a series of Management Plans. The Third Management Plan (TMP) covers the period 2000-2010. CWAG does not believe that the water users in the PAMA are on track to meet it. By CWAG committee, March 2005. View Document.

CWAG Review of the PrAMA Third Management Plan

The water supply for the Prescott Tri-cities area is primarily groundwater pumped from the aquifer system that underlies the Prescott Active Management Area (PAMA). A state-mandated goal of the PAMA is to achieve safe yield by the year 2025. The state describes a scenario for achieving safe yield through a series of Management Plans. The Third Management Plan (TMP) covers the period 2000-2010. CWAG does not believe that the water users in the PAMA are on track to meet it. CWAG wrote to Herb Guenther, Director of the Arizona Department of Water Resources and asked that the TMP be reopened to include new provisions to achieve safe yield. View Document.

CYHWRMS Status Report January 2009

Presentation given to CWAG meeting describing the current status of the CYHWRMS study. By Ken Janecek, CWAG Board member. View Document.

Emerging Chemical Contaminants

There is growing concern worldwide about aquifer pollution by large numbers of emerging, anthropogenic chemicals (ECs) that escape standard wastewater treatment. Inasmuch as the rapidly-growing, arid Southwest uses such effluent to recharge depleting aquifers, there is an acute need for a better understanding of and a more complete treatment process to protect human and environmental health. Important among these contaminants is a broad suite of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that include natural or synthetic hormones as well as compounds that mimic hormones and may interfere with the operation of endocrine systems even at concentrations of parts per trillion. Indeed, evidence now indicates that some aquatic organisms are adversely affected at these levels where treated wastewater is discharged into streams. The paper will elaborate on these points building a case that this issue deserves attention. By Frank Butterworth, Ken Janecek, and Ed Wolfe. View Document.

Evaluation of the NARGFM model

Evaluation of the groundwater model developed by the USGS (NARGFM), determining that the NARGFM model is an excellent tool for examining long- term changes in groundwater levels and related stream flow in the Paulden, Chino Valley, Prescott and Prescott Valley areas. By Dr. Peter Kroopnick, CWAG Science Committee Chair. View Document.

Glossary of Acronyms

Glossary of Acronyms.  View document.

Hearing Things: The Rumble of the 900-lb SRP Gorilla in Administrative Hearings on Prescott's Pipeline

Entertaining analysis of the 2009 hearings on Prescott's application for a permit to pump the Big Chino. View Document.

How Many More Homes Can Be Built in Prescott Without New Sources of Water?

If Prescott resumes the growth rate it had prior to the 2007-2010 housing bust, the city can continue to build new homes for about 27 years without additional water supplies. Written by Howard Mechanic, 2010. View Document.

Importance of the River and Riparian Habitat in the Upper Verde River Threatened by Diminished Base Flow

The ecological value of the Upper Verde River results in significant economic, recreational, and aesthetic benefit to the citizens of Yavapai and Coconino counties, as well as the State of Arizona, and has earned international attention as well. The river flows and habitat along the Verde River headwaters remain in relatively natural states for now, but vigilance and action are important for maintaining this rare habitat. Written by CWAG Science Committee. View Document.

Longview Pumped Storage Project

CWAG's current position on the Longview Pumped Storage project proposed for the upper Big Chino Valley. View Document. 

Mitigation Plan

Presentation to CWAG describing the elements of a mitigation plan for the Big Chino Pipeline. By John Zambrano, 2009. View Document.

Need for Big Chino Water is Years Away

Many people assume we need Big Chino water soon -- both to continue Prescott's growth and to reach Safe Yield. However, it is now clear this assumption is incorrect. In fact, there is a good chance we won't need Big Chino water until 2025 for either Safe Yield or to continue growth. Presentation to Prescott City Council by Howard Mechanic, 2008. View Document. 

Northpoint High School Verde Project

When ninth- grade students at the Northpoint Expeditionary Learning Academy in Prescott study the Verde River, they really study the Verde River.
They not only spend an entire semester on a single subject in a wide variety of classes, but they also integrate that subject into real-world examples in their hometown.
CWAG facilitated the Northpoint Verde project with classroom presentations and field trips. View Document.

Overview: Climate Change Impacts on Water

Arizona's climate is becoming warmer and drier. Observed local trends combined with observed and projected global warming trends indicate that winter snow accumulations will continue to decrease in northern Arizona. Consequences include not only decreased ground-water recharge but also substantially increased water consumption for farms, trees, lawns, and gardens. View Document.

Potential Future Declines in Base Flow to the Upper Verde River Due to Groundwater Extraction

This report builds on earlier work by the USGS in cooperation with the Arizona Department of Water Resources and Yavapai County to develop a regional flow model for northern Arizona. The USGS, in conjunction with the Verde River Basin Partnership (VRBP) and the Town of Clarkdale, subsequently applied the model in a series of simulations to gain a greater understanding of the past and potential future human impacts on the Middle Verde River's streamflow.

The work discussed in this paper was carried out to: (A) test the accuracy and predictive capability of the model within the Big Chino and Little Chino sub-basins; (B) illustrate the historical change in base flow at the USGS Paulden and Clarkdale streamgages; and (C) perform forward-looking simulations for the period 2005-2110 that evaluate potential effects on base flow in the upper Verde River resulting from; (1) unchanged water demand from 2005 through 2110, (2) continuing drought, (3) increased water demand, (4) extraction of the ADWR allocated 12,000 acre-feet per year (ac-ft/yr) of groundwater from the central part of the Big Chino sub- basin beginning in 2020, and (5) the cumulative effect of cases (1) through (4).

My testing of NARGFM showed that excellent agreement was found between historically observed and simulated groundwater elevations within the area of concern. In addition, simulated trends in both groundwater elevation and discharge to the Verde River are accurate to within industry-standard ranges.

My forward-looking simulations using the NARGFM show that the cumulative effect of continuing drought, increased water demand, and extraction of 12,000 ac-ft/yr (16.6 cfs) of groundwater from the Big Chino, will decrease the base flow to the Verde River by 12.8 cfs at the Paulden streamgage by the year 2110. Since the base flow at the Paulden streamgage in 2005 was approximately 19 cfs, this would leave only 6.2 cfs in the river. View Document.

Author: Peter Kroopnick, PhD. Revised April, 2015


Vegetation Management

CWAG's view of the watershed improvement project under consideration by the UVRWPC. View Document.

Well Hydrographs for the Prescott AMA

Annotated hydrographs throughout the Prescott AMA showing the change in water levels, by Doug McMillan. View Document.

Why Big Chino Pumping Threatens the Verde

An often-repeated view is that the extraction of approximately 8,700 acre-feet per year (af/y) of ground water by Prescott and Prescott Valley from the Big Chino Water Ranch will have little if any effect on the springs that feed the upper Verde River. This optimistic view gained support from the report of Prescott's hydrologic consultants, who suggested that ground water from the Big Chino Valley may supply little if any of the ground water that feeds these upper Verde River springs.
In contrast, two recent reports by the U.S. Geological Survey—one by Laurie Wirt and colleagues, the other by Kyle Blasch and colleagues—show that the vast majority, if not all, of the ground water that enters the upper Verde River from these springs—an average of 17,900 af/y over the 14 years from 1990 through 2003—comes from aquifers in the Big and Little Chino watersheds, with most of it (somewhere between 14,300 af/y and 15,400 af/y) coming from the Big Chino watershed, including Williamson Valley. Further, these reports show that perennial (continuous) flow (also known as base flow) in the upper 22 miles of the river is dependent upon the ground water that issues from these springs. Should the springs go dry, the Verde River above Perkinsville will be dry or nearly so except at times of storms or snowmelt. In addition, the amount of perennial flow that enters the Verde Valley above Clarkdale will be reduced by about 30 percent. By Bill Meyer and Ed Wolfe, 2007. View Document.

Why Care About the Verde?

Presentation describing the values of the Verde River by Joanne Oellers, 2009. View Document.


  • "Ranchers need clean water for their stock, farmers need it for their crops, every employer needs it to stay in business, and every living thing needs it for life... The law needs to be clear to protect water quality and the rights of landowners."
    Mark Udall
  • "Water is the driver of Nature."
    Leonardo da Vinci
  • "When the well is dry, we know the worth of water."
    Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanac, 1746
  • "...and since flow of information is to spirit what water is to life, we'd best think about how to keep the pipes free and unclogged."
    Raphie Frank
  • "In an age when man has forgotten his origins and is blind even to his most essential needs for survival, water along with other resources has become the victim of his indifference."
    Rachel Carson
  • "We forget that the water cycle and the life cycle are one."
    Jacques Yves Cousteau
  • "Water is life's matter and matrix, mother and medium. There is no life without water."
    Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, 1937 Nobel Prize for Medicine
  • "Water is everywhere and in all living things; we cannot be separated from water. No water, no life. Period..."
    Robert Fulghum
  • "It's the water. Everything is driven by the water."
    Mike Thompson
  • "Whiskey is for drinking; water is for fighting over."
    Mark Twain