The most urgent need for drought planning is in the rural parts of the state, where alternative water supplies are generally very limited and the economy is strongly affected by drought (e.g., grazing, recreation, tourism, and forestry). Most of rural Arizona relies exclusively on groundwater as its primary water source and lacks the groundwater regulations and conservation requirements which have been present in the state’s active management areas (AMAs) and irrigation non-expansion areas (INAs) since 1980. This need lead to the establishment of new water use requirements for all community water systems across the state, not only those located in AMAs and INAs:
Annual Water Use Report: helps water providers evaluate their system’s efficiency and plan for future needs by providing information on water pumped or diverted, water received, and water delivered to customers.
System Water Plan: helps water providers reduce their drought vulnerability and plan for future water shortages by including a water supply plan, a water conservation plan and a drought plan. The drought plan asks water systems to describe their drought stages and triggers, emergency sources of water, customer communication strategies, and other planning actions.
Both the Water Use Report and System Water Plan provide a means for the state to gather water-use data to use in its planning efforts. To read more about these requirements, visit the Community Water Systems webpage.