PHOENIX—Rep. Greg Stanton issued the following statement following the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s announcement of a first-ever water shortage declaration for the Colorado River.

“Although expected, today’s Colorado River shortage declaration is alarming––and the latest example of how our rapidly changing climate and prolonged drought will continue to affect the lives of Arizonans.

Ultimately, Arizona’s economy—from agriculture and recreation to our future growth—depends on a well-managed water system.

Further action to safeguard our water supply has never been more critical, and Arizona leaders must meet this moment with the urgency required. Basin state stakeholders must come to the table in good faith to renegotiate the next iteration of the Drought Contingency Plan and long-term plans that follow. And the State of Arizona must demonstrate leadership and modernize groundwater management policies.

I’ll continue to make sure that Congress will do its part to sustainably plan for our water future, provide investments in resilient water infrastructure and take meaningful action to mitigate climate change. There is still much work to do on this front and I hope today’s declaration will be a catalyst for action.”