We have been working for several years with our client Friends of Verde River Greenway on an exciting project called the Verde River Exchange. The Exchange is a voluntary, collaborative, locally developed program allowing groundwater users in Arizona’s Verde Valley to “offset” the impact of their groundwater use on the Verde River. The program creates a mechanism where new uses of water can be balanced by projects to reduce or temporarily curtail existing uses, helping move the system towards a healthy equilibrium.
This month, it was announced that the Verde River Exchange is one of five finalists for the New Arizona Prize Water Innovation Challenge. The challenge, sponsored by the Arizona Community Foundation, Republic Media, and Morrison Institute for Public Policy, invited collaborative teams to “develop innovative and scalable market-based solutions to advance the sustainability of its water future.” The winning team will receive $250,000 to implement its solution.
Congratulations to Friends of Verde River Greenway and all of its partners on the Verde River Exchange for being named a finalist! And congratulations to the other creative entrants and finalists in the challenge. Here’s more information about the Water Innovation Challenge and the solutions proposed by the winning teams.
To learn more about the Exchange, go to www.verderiverexchange.org. And if you live in Arizona, consider helping out by visiting the Verde Valley wineries that are some of the first participants in the Exchange—Page Springs Cellars and Caduceus Cellars—and thanking them for their civic leadership.