New research

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This section of the Wiki highlights new (2020- ) research publications relevant to the management of water and related resources in the Colorado River Basin: peer-reviewed papers, book chapters, agency reports, and other documents.

Below, these publications are listed by year of publication. For the current year (2022) they are listed by month of publication, and for previous years (2020, 2021) they are organized by topic.

A link to the online publication is provided at the end of each listing, annotated with a ($) if the full text/PDF is paywalled. (Abstracts are always freely available.) If you don't have personal or institutional access to a paywalled publication, open the link to the online publication, see who is listed as the "corresponding author" (not always the first author), and email that person to obtain a copy.

Selected publications whose titles are bold links below have a dedicated Wiki page.

2022 (sorted by month)

January 2022

Smith, R., Zagona, E., Kasprzyk, J., et al. (2022). Decision Science Can Help Address the Challenges of Long‐Term Planning in the Colorado River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.12985. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12985


Zhang, W., Hari, V., S-Y Wang, S., et al. (2022). Fewer Troughs, Not More Ridges, Have Led to a Drying Trend in the Western United States. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(1), e2021GL097089. ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL097089

2022 (sorted by topic)

Cross-cutting reports


Schmidt, J. C., Bruckerhoff, L., Salehabadi, H., and Wang, J. (2022). The Colorado River. In A. Gupta (Ed.), Large Rivers (1st ed., pp. 253–319). Wiley. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119412632.ch10


Smith, R., Zagona, E., Kasprzyk, J., et al. (2022). Decision Science Can Help Address the Challenges of Long‐Term Planning in the Colorado River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.12985. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12985

Weather and climate


Biederman, J. A., Robles, M. D., Scott, R. L., and Knowles, J. F. (2022). Streamflow Response to Wildfire Differs with Season and Elevation in Adjacent Headwaters of the Lower Colorado River Basin. Water Resources Research, 58(3). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021WR030687


Feldman, D. R., Worden, M., Falco, N., et al. (2022). Three‐Dimensional Surface Downwelling Longwave Radiation Clear‐Sky Effects in the Upper Colorado River Basin. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(4). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL094605


Gangopadhyay, S., Woodhouse, C. A., McCabe, G. J., Routson, C. C., and Meko, D. M. (2022). Tree Rings Reveal Unmatched 2nd Century Drought in the Colorado River Basin. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(11). https://doi.org/10.1029/2022GL098781


McCoy, A. L., Jacobs, K. L., Vano, J. A., et al. (2022). The Press and Pulse of Climate Change: Extreme Events in the Colorado River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.13021. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.13021


Pokharel, B., Jagannathan, K. A., Wang, S.-Y. (Simon), et al. (2022). Drought-busting “miracles” in the Colorado River Basin may become less frequent and less powerful under climate warming [Preprint]. Meteorology. https://doi.org/10.1002/essoar.10511012.1


Talsma, C. J., Bennett, K. E., and Vesselinov, V. V. (2022). Characterizing Drought Behavior in the Colorado River Basin Using Unsupervised Machine Learning. Earth and Space Science, 9(5). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021EA002086


Towler, E., Woodson, D., Baker, S., et al. (2022). Incorporating Mid-Term Temperature Predictions into Streamflow Forecasts and Operational Reservoir Projections in the Colorado River Basin. Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 148(4), 04022007. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)WR.1943-5452.0001534


Zhang, W., Hari, V., S-Y Wang, S., et al. (2022). Fewer Troughs, Not More Ridges, Have Led to a Drying Trend in the Western United States. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(1), e2021GL097089. https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL097089

Hydrology and water availability


Biederman, J. A., Robles, M. D., Scott, R. L., and Knowles, J. F. (2022). Streamflow Response to Wildfire Differs with Season and Elevation in Adjacent Headwaters of the Lower Colorado River Basin. Water Resources Research, 58(3). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021WR030687


Gan, Y., Zhang, Y., Liu, Y., Kongoli, C., and Grassotti, C. (2022). Assimilation of blended in situ-satellite snow water equivalent into the National Water Model for improving hydrologic simulation in two US river basins. Science of The Total Environment, 838, 156567. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.156567


Gangopadhyay, S., Woodhouse, C. A., McCabe, G. J., Routson, C. C., and Meko, D. M. (2022). Tree Rings Reveal Unmatched 2nd Century Drought in the Colorado River Basin. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(11). https://doi.org/10.1029/2022GL098781


Lin, Y., Takano, Y., Gu, Y., et al. (2022). Investigation of Springtime Cloud Influence on Regional Climate and Its Implication in Runoff Decline in Upper Colorado River Basin. Earth and Space Science, 9(1). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021EA002059


McCoy, A. L., Jacobs, K. L., Vano, J. A., et al. (2022). The Press and Pulse of Climate Change: Extreme Events in the Colorado River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.13021. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.13021


Meko, D. M., Woodhouse, C. A., and Winitsky, A. G. (2022). Tree‐Ring Perspectives on the Colorado River: Looking Back and Moving Forward. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.12989. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12989


Tran, H., Zhang, J., O’Neill, M. M., et al. (2022). A hydrological simulation dataset of the Upper Colorado River Basin from 1983 to 2019. Scientific Data, 9(1), 16. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-022-01123-w


Williams, A. P., Livneh, B., McKinnon, K. A., et al. (2022). Growing impact of wildfire on western US water supply. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 119(10), e2114069119. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2114069119


Zhang, W., Hari, V., S-Y Wang, S., et al. (2022). Fewer Troughs, Not More Ridges, Have Led to a Drying Trend in the Western United States. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(1), e2021GL097089. https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL097089

Water management, planning, and policy


Kuhn, E., and Fleck, J. (2022). “The Consequences of the Compact Remains with Us”: Challenges and Opportunities for the Colorado River Upper Basin. SSRN Electronic Journal. https://doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4094375


Quay, R., Sternlieb, F., Rauh, E., et al. (2022). Evaluating the effectiveness of land and water integrative practices for achieving water sustainability within the Colorado River Basin: Perceptions and indicators. Water International, 47(2), 257–277. https://doi.org/10.1080/02508060.2022.2041281


Smith, R., Zagona, E., Kasprzyk, J., et al. (2022). Decision Science Can Help Address the Challenges of Long‐Term Planning in the Colorado River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.12985. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12985


Talsma, C. J., Bennett, K. E., and Vesselinov, V. V. (2022). Characterizing Drought Behavior in the Colorado River Basin Using Unsupervised Machine Learning. Earth and Space Science, 9(5). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021EA002086

Water use


Quay, R., Sternlieb, F., Rauh, E., et al. (2022). Evaluating the effectiveness of land and water integrative practices for achieving water sustainability within the Colorado River Basin: Perceptions and indicators. Water International, 47(2), 257–277. https://doi.org/10.1080/02508060.2022.2041281


Root, Jonathan, J., Daniel. (2022). Elevation-Area-Capacity Relationships of Lake Powell in 2018 and Estimated Loss of Storage Capacity Since 1963 (Scientific Investigations Report No. 2022–5017; Scientific Investigations Report). https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20225017

Water quality and sediment


Goldrich-Middaugh, G. M., Ma, L., Engle, M. A., et al. (2022). Regional Drivers of Stream Chemical Behavior: Leveraging Lithology, Land Use, and Climate Gradients across the Colorado River, Texas USA [Preprint]. Hydrology. https://doi.org/10.1002/essoar.10510590.1


Johnson, C., Root, J. C., Hynek, S. A., and Schmidt, J. (Jack) C. (2022). Sedimentary record of annual-decadal timescale reservoir dynamics: Anthropogenic stratigraphy of Lake Powell, Utah, U.S.A. The Sedimentary Record, 20(1). https://doi.org/10.2110/sedred.2022.1.3

Ecosystems and environment


Comte, L., Olden, J. D., Lischka, S., and Dickson, B. G. (2022). Multi-scale threat assessment of riverine ecosystems in the Colorado River Basin. Ecological Indicators, 138, 108840. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolind.2022.108840


Gangopadhyay, S., Woodhouse, C. A., McCabe, G. J., Routson, C. C., and Meko, D. M. (2022). Tree Rings Reveal Unmatched 2nd Century Drought in the Colorado River Basin. Geophysical Research Letters, 49(11). https://doi.org/10.1029/2022GL098781


Meko, D. M., Woodhouse, C. A., and Winitsky, A. G. (2022). Tree‐Ring Perspectives on the Colorado River: Looking Back and Moving Forward. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.12989. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12989

Societal and economic issues


Hung, F., Son, K., and Yang, Y. C. E. (2022). Investigating uncertainties in human adaptation and their impacts on water scarcity in the Colorado river Basin, United States. Journal of Hydrology, 612, 128015. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2022.128015


Kuhn, E., and Fleck, J. (2022). “The Consequences of the Compact Remains with Us”: Challenges and Opportunities for the Colorado River Upper Basin. SSRN Electronic Journal. https://doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4094375


Rushforth, R. R., Zegre, N. P., and Ruddell, B. L. (2022). The Three Colorado Rivers: Hydrologic, Infrastructural, and Economic Flows of Water in a Shared River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 58(2), 269–281. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12997

2021 (sorted by topic)

Cross-cutting reports

SECURE cover thumb.png

2021 SECURE Water Act reports:


Eppehimer, D., Fard, E., Kemper, J., et al. (2021). Climate adaptation planning to support ecosystems and people in the Gila River Watershed, Arizona (p. 49). Southwest Climate Adaptation Science Center. https://www.swcasc.arizona.edu/sites/default/files/data/NRWD_Final%20Report2021.pdf

Weather and climate


Bennett, K. E., Talsma, C., and Boero, R. (2021). Concurrent Changes in Extreme Hydroclimate Events in the Colorado River Basin. Water, 13(7), 978. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13070978


Brunner, M. I., Swain, D. L., Gilleland, E., and Wood, A. W. (2021). Increasing importance of temperature as a contributor to the spatial extent of streamflow drought. Environmental Research Letters, 16(2), 024038. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/abd2f0


Cook, B. I., Mankin, J. S., Williams, A. P., et al. (2021). Uncertainties, Limits, and Benefits of Climate Change Mitigation for Soil Moisture Drought in Southwestern North America. Earth’s Future, 9(9). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021EF002014


Fowler, H. J., Lenderink, G., Prein, A. F., et al. (2021). Anthropogenic intensification of short-duration rainfall extremes. Nature Reviews Earth and Environment, 2(2), 107–122. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s43017-020-00128-6


Huang, H., Patricola, C. M., Bercos‐Hickey, E., et al. (2021). Sources of Subseasonal‐To‐Seasonal Predictability of Atmospheric Rivers and Precipitation in the Western United States. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 126(6). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JD034053


Mahoney, K., Scott, J. D., Alexander, M., et al. (2021). Cool season precipitation projections for California and the Western United States in NA-CORDEX models. Climate Dynamics, 56(9–10), 3081–3102. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-021-05632-z


Meyer, J. D. D., Wang, S. ‐Y. S., Gillies, R. R., and Yoon, J. (2021). Evaluating NA‐CORDEX historical performance and future change of western U.S. precipitation patterns and modes of variability. International Journal of Climatology, 41(9), 4509–4532. https://doi.org/10.1002/joc.7083


Mohsin, M., and Pilz, J. (2021). Stochastic model for drought analysis of the Colorado River Basin. Stochastic Environmental Research and Risk Assessment. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s00477-021-01989-z


Osenga, E. C., Vano, J. A., and Arnott, J. C. (2021). A community‐supported weather and soil moisture monitoring database of the Roaring Fork catchment of the Colorado River Headwaters. Hydrological Processes, 35(3). https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.14081


Pascolini-Campbell, M., Reager, J. T., Chandanpurkar, H. A., and Rodell, M. (2021). A 10 per cent increase in global land evapotranspiration from 2003 to 2019. Nature, 593(7860), 543–547. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-021-03503-5


Pierce, D. W., Cayan, D. R., Goodrich, J., Das, T., and Munévar, A. (2021). Evaluating Global Climate Models for Hydrological Studies of the Upper Colorado River Basin. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, n/a(n/a). https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12974


Simpson, I. R., McKinnon, K. A., Davenport, F. V., et al. (2021). Emergent constraints on the large scale atmospheric circulation and regional hydroclimate: Do they still work in CMIP6 and how much can they actually constrain the future? ($) Journal of Climate, 1–62. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-21-0055.1


Stevens, A., Willett, R., Mamalakis, A., et al. (2021). Graph-Guided Regularized Regression of Pacific Ocean Climate Variables to Increase Predictive Skill of Southwestern U.S. Winter Precipitation. Journal of Climate, 34(2), 737–754. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-20-0079.1


Szejner, P., Belmecheri, S., Babst, F., et al. (2021). Stable isotopes of tree rings reveal seasonal-to-decadal patterns during the emergence of a megadrought in the Southwestern US. Oecologia. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s00442-021-04916-9


Towler, E., and Yates, D. (2021). Incorporating multiyear temperature predictions for water resources planning. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 60(2), 171–183. https://doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-20-0134.1


Williams, A. P., Anchukaitis, K. J., Woodhouse, C. A., et al. (2021). Tree Rings and Observations Suggest No Stable Cycles in Sierra Nevada Cool‐Season Precipitation. Water Resources Research, 57(3). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR028599


Xiao, M., and Lettenmaier, D. P. (2021). Atmospheric Rivers and Snow Accumulation in the Upper Colorado River Basin. Geophysical Research Letters, 48(16), e2021GL094265. ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL094265


Zhang, F., Biederman, J. A., Dannenberg, M. P., et al. (2021). Five Decades of Observed Daily Precipitation Reveal Longer and More Variable Drought Events Across Much of the Western United States. Geophysical Research Letters, 48(7). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020GL092293


Zhao, S., and Zhang, J. (2021). Causal effect of the tropical Pacific sea surface temperature on the Upper Colorado River Basin spring precipitation. Climate Dynamics. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-021-05944-0


Hydrology and water availability


Baker, S. A., Rajagopalan, B., and Wood, A. W. (2021). Enhancing Ensemble Seasonal Streamflow Forecasts in the Upper Colorado River Basin Using Multi‐Model Climate Forecasts. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 57(6), 906–922. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12960


Brice, B., Guiterman, C. H., Woodhouse, C., et al. (2021). Comparing tree-ring based reconstructions of snowpack variability at different scales for the Navajo Nation. Climate Services, 22, 100213. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cliser.2021.100213


Darvishi, M., Destouni, G., Aminjafari, S., and Jaramillo, F. (2021). Multi-Sensor InSAR Assessment of Ground Deformations around Lake Mead and Its Relation to Water Level Changes. Remote Sensing, 13(3), 406. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13030406


Day, N. K. (2021). Assessment of streamflow and water quality in the Upper Yampa River Basin, Colorado, 1992–2018 (Report No. 2021–5016; Scientific Investigations Report). USGS Publications Warehouse. https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215016


Elias, E., James, D., Heimel, S., et al. (2021). Implications of observed changes in high mountain snow water storage, snowmelt timing and melt window. Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies, 35, 100799. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejrh.2021.100799


Fleming, S. W., Vesselinov, V. V., and Goodbody, A. G. (2021). Augmenting geophysical interpretation of data-driven operational water supply forecast modeling for a western US river using a hybrid machine learning approach. Journal of Hydrology, 597, 126327. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2021.126327


Heldmyer, A., Livneh, B., Molotch, N., and Rajagopalan, B. (2021). Investigating the Relationship Between Peak Snow‐Water Equivalent and Snow Timing Indices in the Western United States and Alaska. Water Resources Research, 57(5). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR029395


Hwang, J., Kumar, H., Ruhi, A., Sankarasubramanian, A., and Devineni, N. (2021). Quantifying Dam-Induced Fluctuations in Streamflow Frequencies Across the Colorado River Basin. Water Resources Research, 57(10), e2021WR029753. ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2021WR029753


Lackner, C. P., Geerts, B., and Wang, Y. (2021). Impact of global warming on snow in ski areas: A case study using a regional climate simulation over the interior western United States. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology. ($) https://doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-20-0155.1


Li, Y., Gao, H., Allen, G. H., and Zhang, Z. (2021). Constructing Reservoir Area–Volume–Elevation Curve from TanDEM-X DEM Data. IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing, 14, 2249–2257. https://doi.org/10.1109/JSTARS.2021.3051103


McCabe, G. J., and Wolock, D. M. (2021). Water balance of the turn-of-the-century drought in the Southwestern United States. Environmental Research Letters, 16(4), 044015. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/abbfc1


Miller, O. L., Miller, M. P., Longley, P. C., et al. (2021). How Will Baseflow Respond to Climate Change in the Upper Colorado River Basin? Geophysical Research Letters, 48(22). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL095085


Miller, O. L., Putman, A. L., Alder, J., et al. (2021). Changing climate drives future streamflow declines and challenges in meeting water demand across the southwestern United States. Journal of Hydrology X, 11, 100074. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hydroa.2021.100074


Musselman, K. N., Addor, N., Vano, J. A., and Molotch, N. P. (2021). Winter melt trends portend widespread declines in snow water resources. Nature Climate Change, 11(5), 418–424. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-021-01014-9


Pascolini-Campbell, M., Reager, J. T., Chandanpurkar, H. A., and Rodell, M. (2021). A 10 per cent increase in global land evapotranspiration from 2003 to 2019. Nature, 593(7860), 543–547. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-021-03503-5


Peters-Lidard, C. D., Rose, K. C., Kiang, J. E., et al. (2021). Indicators of climate change impacts on the water cycle and water management. Climatic Change, 165(1–2), 36. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-021-03057-5


Sabol, T. A., Griffiths, R. E., Topping, D. J., et al. (2021). Strandlines from large floods on the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona (Report No. 2021–5048; Scientific Investigations Report, p. 41). USGS Publications Warehouse. https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215048


Scanlon, B. R., Rateb, A., Pool, D. R., et al. (2021). Effects of climate and irrigation on GRACE-based estimates of water storage changes in major US aquifers. Environmental Research Letters, 16(9), 094009. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/ac16ff


Schrock, I. J. Y., Fassnacht, S. R., Collados-Lara, A.-J., et al. (2021). Snow Water Equivalent Accumulation Patterns from a Trajectory Approach over the U.S. Southern Rocky Mountains. Hydrology, 8(3), 124. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology8030124


Siirila-Woodburn, E. R., Rhoades, A. M., Hatchett, B. J., et al. (2021). A low-to-no snow future and its impacts on water resources in the western United States. Nature Reviews Earth and Environment, 2(11), 800–819. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s43017-021-00219-y


Swanson, R. K., Springer, A. E., Kreamer, D. K., et al. (2021). Quantifying the base flow of the Colorado River: Its importance in sustaining perennial flow in northern Arizona and southern Utah (USA). Hydrogeology Journal, 29(2), 723–736. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s10040-020-02260-5


Unema, J. A., Topping, D. J., Kohl, K. A., Pillow, M. J., and Caster, J. J. (2021). Historical floods and geomorphic change in the lower Little Colorado River during the late 19th to early 21st centuries (Report No. 2021–5049; Scientific Investigations Report, p. 34). USGS Publications Warehouse. https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215049


Woodhouse, C. A., Smith, R. M., McAfee, S. A., et al. (2021). Upper Colorado River Basin 20th century droughts under 21st century warming: Plausible scenarios for the future. Climate Services, 21, 100206. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cliser.2020.100206


Woodson, D., Rajagopalan, B., Baker, S., et al. (2021). Stochastic Decadal Projections of Colorado River Streamflow and Reservoir Pool Elevations Conditioned on Temperature Projections. Water Resources Research, 57(12), e2021WR030936. ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2021WR030936


Yin, G., Forman, B. A., and Wang, J. (2021). Assimilation of Ground-Based GPS Observations of Vertical Displacement into a Land Surface Model to Improve Terrestrial Water Storage Estimates. Water Resources Research, 57(2), e2020WR028763. ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR028763


Zhao, S., Fu, R., Zhuang, Y., and Wang, G. (2021). Long-Lead Seasonal Prediction of Streamflow over the Upper Colorado River Basin: The Role of the Pacific Sea Surface Temperature and Beyond. Journal of Climate, 34(16), 6855–6873. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-20-0824.1

Water management, planning, and policy


Butler, A., Fulp, T., Prairie, J., and Witherall, A. (2021). Water Resources Management in the Colorado River Basin. In Handbook of Catchment Management 2e (pp. 441–463). John Wiley and Sons, Ltd. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119531241.ch18


Fleck, J., and Castle, A. (2021). Green Light for Adaptive Policies on the Colorado River. Water, 14(1), 2. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14010002


Fleck, J., and Udall, B. (2021). Managing Colorado River risk. Science, 372(6545), 885–885. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abj5498


Garcia, M., and Islam, S. (2021). Water stress and water salience: Implications for water supply planning. Hydrological Sciences Journal, 66(6), 919–934. ($) https://doi.org/10.1080/02626667.2021.1903474


Gerlak, A. K., Jacobs, K. L., McCoy, A. L., et al. (2021). Scenario Planning: Embracing the Potential for Extreme Events in the Colorado River Basin. Climatic Change, 165(1–2), 27. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-021-03013-3


Gerlak, A. K., Karambelkar, S., and Ferguson, D. B. (2021). Knowledge governance and learning: Examining challenges and opportunities in the Colorado River basin. Environmental Science and Policy, 125, 219–230. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2021.08.026


Gilson, G., and Garrick, D. (2021). Can Philanthropy Enable Collective Action to Conserve Rivers? Insights from a Decade of Collaboration in the Colorado River Basin. Conservation and Society, 19(3), 190. https://doi.org/10.4103/cs.cs_225_20


Hung, F., and Yang, Y. C. E. (2021). Assessing Adaptive Irrigation Impacts on Water Scarcity in Nonstationary Environments—A Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning Approach. Water Resources Research, 57(9), e2020WR029262. ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR029262


Kwon, K., and Gimbel, J. (2021). Quenching Thirst in the Colorado River Basin. Colorado Water Center, Colorado State University, July 2021. 68 p. https://watercenter.colostate.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/33/2021/11/CoWC-CR-Papers-Final-11032021.pdf


MacDonnell, L. J. (2021). Colorado River Basin. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3780342


MacDonnell, L. J. (2021). The Law of the Colorado River: Coping with Severe Sustained Drought, Part II. https://ssrn.com/abstract=3811024


MacDonnell, L. (2021). Sources of Controversy in the Law of the Colorado River: An Upper Basin View. https://www.ssrn.com/abstract=3874212


Milman, A., Bonnell, C., Maguire, R., Sorensen, K., and Blomquist, W. (2021). Groundwater Recharge for Water Security. Case Studies in the Environment, 5(1), 1113999. https://doi.org/10.1525/cse.2020.1113999


Rivera-Torres, M., and Gerlak, A. K. (2021). Evolving together: Transboundary water governance in the Colorado River Basin. International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, 21(4), 553–574. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10784-021-09538-3


Rivera-Torres, M., Gerlak, A. K., and Jacobs, K. L. (2021). Lesson learning in the Colorado River Basin. Water International, 1–11. ($) https://doi.org/10.1080/02508060.2021.1913782


Rosenberg, D. E. (2021). Adapt Lake Mead Releases to Inflow to Give Managers More Flexibility to Slow Reservoir Draw Down. Paper 170, Utah Water Research Laboratory, Utah State University, September 2021. 10 p. https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/water_pubs/170/


Spivak, D. S. (2021). The Colorado River Drought Contingency Plan. Natural Resources Journal, 61, 33. https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/nrj/vol61/iss2/4/


Wang, J., and Rosenberg, D. E. (2021). Living Within Our Means: Adapting Colorado River Basin Depletions to Available Water. Paper 171, Utah Water Research Laboratory, Utah State University, 2021. 25 p. https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/water_pubs/171/


Wheeler, K., Kuhn, E., Bruckerhoff, L., et al. (2021). Alternative Management Paradigms for the Future of the Colorado and Green Rivers. White Paper 6, Future of the Colorado River Project, Center for Colorado River Studies, Utah State University. 91 pp. https://qcnr.usu.edu/coloradoriver/files/WhitePaper6.pdf

Water use


Cabot, P., Derwingson, A., and Torres-Rua, A. (2021). Evaluating Conserved-Consumptive Use in the Upper Colorado Basin. Colorado Water Conservation Board, November 2021. https://www.waterinfo.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/Evaluating-Conserved-Consumptive-Use-in-the-Upper-Colorado-Basin_2020-Project-Report-00484067xC13E4.pdf


Earp, K. J., and Moreo, M. T. (2021). Evaporation from Lake Mead and Lake Mohave, Nevada and Arizona, 2010–2019 (Open-File Report No. 2021–1022; 48 p.). U.S. Geological Survey. https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20211022


Melton, F. S., Huntington, J., Grimm, R., et al. (2021). OpenET: Filling a Critical Data Gap in Water Management for the Western United States. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 1752-1688.12956. https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12956


Norton, C. L., Dannenberg, M. P., Yan, D., et al. (2021). Climate and Socioeconomic Factors Drive Irrigated Agriculture Dynamics in the Lower Colorado River Basin. Remote Sensing, 13(9), 1659. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13091659

Water quality and sediment


Cavallin, J. E., Battaglin, W. A., Beihoffer, J., et al. (2021). Effects-Based Monitoring of Bioactive Chemicals Discharged to the Colorado River before and after a Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant Replacement. Environmental Science and Technology, 55(2), 974–984. ($) https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.0c05269


Cederberg, J. R., Paretti, N. V., Coes, A. L., Hermosillo, E., and Andrade, L. (2021). Estimation of dissolved-solids concentrations using continuous water-quality monitoring and regression models at four sites in the Yuma area, Arizona and California, January 2017 through March 2019 (Report No. 2021–5080; Scientific Investigations Report, p. 26). USGS Publications Warehouse. https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215080


Day, N. K. (2021). Assessment of streamflow and water quality in the Upper Yampa River Basin, Colorado, 1992–2018 (Report No. 2021–5016; Scientific Investigations Report). USGS Publications Warehouse. https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215016


Hannoun, D., Tietjen, T., & Brooks, K. (2021). The potential effects of climate change and drawdown on a newly constructed drinking water intake: Study case in Las Vegas, NV, USA. Water Utility Journal, 27, 1–13. http://www.ewra.net/wuj/pdf/WUJ_2021_27_01.pdf


Kasprak, A., Sankey, J. B., and Butterfield, B. J. (2021). Future regulated flows of the Colorado River in Grand Canyon foretell decreased areal extent of sediment and increases in riparian vegetation. Environmental Research Letters, 16(1), 014029. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/abc9e4


Mueller, E. R., and Grams, P. E. (2021). A Morphodynamic Model to Evaluate Long‐Term Sandbar Rebuilding Using Controlled Floods in the Grand Canyon. Geophysical Research Letters, 48(9). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL093007


Rumsey, C. A., Miller, O., Hirsch, R. M., et al. (2021). Substantial Declines in Salinity Observed Across the Upper Colorado River Basin During the 20th Century, 1929–2019. Water Resources Research, 57(5). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR028581

Ecosystems and environment


Abernethy, E. F., Muehlbauer, J. D., Kennedy, T. A., et al. (2021). Hydropeaking intensity and dam proximity limit aquatic invertebrate diversity in the Colorado River Basin. Ecosphere, 12(6). https://doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.3559


Alizadeh, M. R., Abatzoglou, J. T., Luce, C. H., et al. (2021). Warming enabled upslope advance in western US forest fires. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 118(22), e2009717118. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2009717118


Bransky, N., Sankey, T., B. Sankey, J., et al. (2021). Monitoring Tamarix Changes Using WorldView-2 Satellite Imagery in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona. Remote Sensing, 13(5), 958. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13050958


Dibble, K. L., Yackulic, C. B., Kennedy, T. A., et al. (2021). Water storage decisions will determine the distribution and persistence of imperiled river fishes. Ecological Applications, 31(2). https://doi.org/10.1002/eap.2279


Durning, L. E., Sankey, J. B., Yackulic, C. B., et al. (2021). Hydrologic and geomorphic effects on riparian plant species occurrence and encroachment: Remote sensing of 360 km of the Colorado River in Grand Canyon. Ecohydrology, 14(8). https://doi.org/10.1002/eco.2344


Heidari, H., Warziniack, T., Brown, T. C., and Arabi, M. (2021). Impacts of Climate Change on Hydroclimatic Conditions of U.S. National Forests and Grasslands. Forests, 12(2), 139. https://doi.org/10.3390/f12020139


Hooley‐Underwood, Z. E., Thompson, K. G., and Bestgen, K. R. (2021). Razorback Sucker Spawning in an Intermittent Colorado Tributary. North American Journal of Fisheries Management, 41(4), 1151–1158. https://doi.org/10.1002/nafm.10623


Kasprak, A., Sankey, J. B., and Butterfield, B. J. (2021). Future regulated flows of the Colorado River in Grand Canyon foretell decreased areal extent of sediment and increases in riparian vegetation. Environmental Research Letters, 16(1), 014029. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/abc9e4


Koehn, C. R., Petrie, M. D., Bradford, J. B., et al. (2021). Seasonal Precipitation and Soil Moisture Relationships Across Forests and Woodlands in the Southwestern United States. Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, 126(4). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JG005986


Lomeli-Banda, M. A., Ramírez-Hernández, J., Rodríguez-Burgueño, J. E., and Salazar-Briones, C. (2021). The role of hydrological processes in ecosystem conservation: Comprehensive water management for a wetland in an arid climate. Hydrological Processes, 35(2), e14013. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.14013


Nagler, P. L., Barreto-Muñoz, A., Chavoshi Borujeni, S., et al. (2021). Riparian Area Changes in Greenness and Water Use on the Lower Colorado River in the USA from 2000 to 2020. Remote Sensing, 13(7), 1332. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13071332


Palmquist, E. C., Allan, G. J., Ogle, K., et al. (2021). Riverine complexity and life history inform restoration in riparian environments in the southwestern U.S. Restoration Ecology. ($) https://doi.org/10.1111/rec.13418


Pennock, C. A., Ahrens, Z. T., McKinstry, M. C., Budy, P., and Gido, K. B. (2021). Trophic niches of native and nonnative fishes along a river-reservoir continuum. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 12140. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-91730-1 --- Pennock, C. A., and Gido, K. B. (2021). Spatial and temporal dynamics of fish assemblages in a desert reservoir over 38 years. Hydrobiologia, 848(6), 1231–1248. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s10750-021-04514-z


Tonkin, J. D., Olden, J. D., Merritt, D. M., et al. (2021). Designing flow regimes to support entire river ecosystems. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 19(6), 326–333. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/fee.2348


Waldo, S., Deemer, B. R., Bair, L. S., and Beaulieu, J. J. (2021). Greenhouse gas emissions from an arid-zone reservoir and their environmental policy significance: Results from existing global models and an exploratory dataset. Environmental Science and Policy, 120, 53–62. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2021.02.006


Zamora, H. A., Eastoe, C. J., McIntosh, J. C., and Flessa, K. W. (2021). Groundwater Origin and Dynamics on the Eastern Flank of the Colorado River Delta, Mexico. Hydrology, 8(2), 80. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology8020080

Societal and economic issues


Tanana, H., Garcia, J., Olaya, A., et al. (2021). Universal Access to Clean Water for Tribes in the Colorado River Basin. Water and Tribes Initiative, Colorado River Basin. http://www.naturalresourcespolicy.org/docs/water-tribes/wti-full-report-4.21.pdf

2020 (sorted by topic)

Cross-cutting reports

SoS cover thumb.png

Lukas, J., and Payton, E. (2020). Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (p. 531). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado Boulder. https://doi.org/10.25810/3hcv-w477

  • Individual report chapters (2-11) are separately listed in their respective categories below

Weather and climate


AghaKouchak, A., Chiang, F., Huning, L. S., et al. (2020). Climate Extremes and Compound Hazards in a Warming World. Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 48(1), 519–548. ($) https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-earth-071719-055228


Ault, T. R. (2020). On the essentials of drought in a changing climate. Science, 368(6488), 256–260. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aaz5492


Baker, S. A., Wood, A. W., and Rajagopalan, B. (2020). Application of Postprocessing to Watershed-Scale Subseasonal Climate Forecasts over the Contiguous United States. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 21(5), 971–987. https://doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-19-0155.1


Chikamoto, Y., Wang, S.-Y. S., Yost, M., Yocom, L., and Gillies, R. R. (2020). Colorado River water supply is predictable on multi-year timescales owing to long-term ocean memory. Nature Communications Earth and Environment, 1(1), 26. https://doi.org/10.1038/s43247-020-00027-0


Foster, L. M., Williams, K. H., and Maxwell, R. M. (2020). Resolution matters when modeling climate change in headwaters of the Colorado River. Environmental Research Letters, 15(10), 104031. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/aba77f


Gibson, P. B., Waliser, D. E., Guan, B., et al. (2020). Ridging Associated with Drought across the Western and Southwestern United States: Characteristics, Trends, and Predictability Sources. Journal of Climate, 33(7), 2485–2508. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-19-0439.1


Hausfather, Z., and Peters, G. P. (2020). Emissions – the ‘business as usual’ story is misleading. Nature, 577(7792), 618–620. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-020-00177-3


Kirchmeier-Young, M. C., and Zhang, X. (2020). Human influence has intensified extreme precipitation in North America. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(24), 13308–13313. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1921628117


Kunkel, K. E., Karl, T. R., Squires, M. F., et al. (2020). Precipitation Extremes: Trends and Relationships with Average Precipitation and Precipitable Water in the Contiguous United States. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 59(1), 125–142. https://doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-19-0185.1


Lukas, J., and Harding, B. (2020). Current Understanding of Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology (Chapter 2). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 42–81). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Lukas, J., Wolter, K., and Barsugli, J. (2020). Weather and Climate Forecasting (Chapter 7). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 254–286). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Mariotti, A., Baggett, C., Barnes, E. A., et al. (2020). Windows of Opportunity for Skillful Forecasts Subseasonal to Seasonal and Beyond. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, BAMS-D-18-0326.1. https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-18-0326.1


McAfee, S. (2020). Observations—Weather and Climate (Chapter 4). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 114–152). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Overpeck, J. T., and Udall, B. (2020). Climate change and the aridification of North America. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(22), 11856–11858. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2006323117


Patricola, C. M., O’Brien, J. P., Risser, M. D., et al. (2020). Maximizing ENSO as a source of western US hydroclimate predictability. Climate Dynamics, 54(1–2), 351–372. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-019-05004-8


Sierks, M. D., Kalansky, J., Cannon, F., and Ralph, F. M. (2020). Characteristics, Origins, and Impacts of Summertime Extreme Precipitation in the Lake Mead Watershed. Journal of Climate, 33(7), 2663–2680. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-19-0387.1


Stahle, D. W., Cook, E. R., Burnette, D. J., et al. (2020). Dynamics, Variability, and Change in Seasonal Precipitation Reconstructions for North America. Journal of Climate, 33(8), 3173–3195. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-19-0270.1


Tokarska, K. B., Stolpe, M. B., Sippel, S., et al. (2020). Past warming trend constrains future warming in CMIP6 models. Science Advances, 6(12), eaaz9549. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aaz9549


Williams, A. P., Cook, E. R., Smerdon, J. E., et al. (2020). Large contribution from anthropogenic warming to an emerging North American megadrought. Science, 368(6488), 314–318. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aaz9600


Wood, A., Woelders, L., and Lukas, J. (2020a). Hydrologic Models (Chapter 6). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 221–252). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Wood, A., Woelders, L., and Lukas, J. (2020b). Streamflow Forecasting (Chapter 8). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 287–333). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Woodhouse, C., and Lukas, J. J. (2020). Paleohydrology (Chapter 10). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 361–383). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z

Hydrology and water availability


Carroll, R. W. H., Gochis, D., and Williams, K. H. (2020). Efficiency of the Summer Monsoon in Generating Streamflow Within a Snow‐Dominated Headwater Basin of the Colorado River. Geophysical Research Letters, 47(23). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020GL090856


Condon, L. E., Atchley, A. L., and Maxwell, R. M. (2020). Evapotranspiration depletes groundwater under warming over the contiguous United States. Nature Communications, 11(1), 873. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-14688-0


Davenport, F. V., Herrera‐Estrada, J. E., Burke, M., and Diffenbaugh, N. S. (2020). Flood Size Increases Nonlinearly Across the Western United States in Response to Lower Snow‐Precipitation Ratios. Water Resources Research, 56(1). https://doi.org/10.1029/2019WR025571


Dethier, E. N., Sartain, S. L., Renshaw, C. E., and Magilligan, F. J. (2020). Spatially coherent regional changes in seasonal extreme streamflow events in the United States and Canada since 1950. Science Advances, 6(49), eaba5939. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aba5939


Hammond, J. C., and Kampf, S. K. (2020). Subannual Streamflow Responses to Rainfall and Snowmelt Inputs in Snow‐Dominated Watersheds of the Western United States. Water Resources Research, 56(4). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2019WR026132


Kohn, M. S., Marineu, M. D., Hempel, L. A., and McDonald, R. R. (2020). Incipient Bed-Movement and Flood-Frequency Analysis using Hydrophones to Estimate Flushing Flows on the Upper Colorado River, Colorado, 2019 (Scientific Investigations Report No. 2020–5069; Scientific Investigations Report, p. 50). U.S. Geological Survey. https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20205069


Liu, T., Greenbaum, N., Baker, V. R., et al. (2020). Paleoflood hydrology on the lower Green River, upper Colorado River Basin, USA: An example of a naturalist approach to flood-risk analysis. Journal of Hydrology, 580, 124337. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2019.124337 [select "View Open Manuscript" if no institutional access]


Liu, T., Ji, L., Baker, V. R., Harden, T. M., and Cline, M. L. (2020). Holocene extreme paleofloods and their climatological context, Upper Colorado River Basin, USA. Progress in Physical Geography: Earth and Environment, 44(5), 727–745. ($) https://doi.org/10.1177/0309133320904038


Livneh, B., and Badger, A. M. (2020). Drought less predictable under declining future snowpack. Nature Climate Change, 10(5), 452–458. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-020-0754-8


Lopez‐Cantu, T., Prein, A. F., and Samaras, C. (2020). Uncertainties in Future U.S. Extreme Precipitation From Downscaled Climate Projections. Geophysical Research Letters, 47(9). https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GL086797


Lukas, J., Gutmann, E., Harding, B., and Lehner, F. (2020). Climate Change-Informed Hydrology (Chapter 11). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 384–449). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Lukas, J., and Harding, B. (2020). Current Understanding of Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology (Chapter 2). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 42–81). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Lukas, J., Payton, E., Deems, J., Rangwala, I., and Duncan, B. (2020). Observations—Hydrology (Chapter 5). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 154–219). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Martin, J. T., Pederson, G. T., Woodhouse, C. A., et al. (2020). Increased drought severity tracks warming in the United States’ largest river basin. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(21), 11328–11336. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1916208117


McCabe, G. J., and Wolock, D. M. (2020). The Water‐Year Water Balance of the Colorado River Basin. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 56(4), 724–737. ($) https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12848


McCabe, G. J., Wolock, D. M., Woodhouse, C. A., et al. (2020). Basinwide Hydroclimatic Drought in the Colorado River Basin. Earth Interactions, 24(2), 1–20. https://doi.org/10.1175/EI-D-20-0001.1


Milly, P. C. D., and Dunne, K. A. (2020). Colorado River flow dwindles as warming-driven loss of reflective snow energizes evaporation. Science. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aay9187


Nelson, S. M., Kendy, E., Flessa, K. W., et al. (2020). Channel incision by headcut migration: Reconnection of the Colorado River to its estuary and the Gulf of California during the floods of 1979–1988. Hydrological Processes, 34(22), 4156–4174. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13858


O’Leary, D. S., Hall, D. K., DiGirolamo, N. E., and Riggs, G. A. (2020). Regional trends in snowmelt timing for the western United States throughout the MODIS era. Physical Geography, 1–23. ($) https://doi.org/10.1080/02723646.2020.1854418


Overpeck, J. T., and Udall, B. (2020). Climate change and the aridification of North America. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(22), 11856–11858. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2006323117


Payton, E. (2020). Historical Hydrology (Chapter 9). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 337–360). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Penn, C. A., Clow, D. W., Sexstone, G. A., and Murphy, S. F. (2020). Changes in Climate and Land Cover Affect Seasonal Streamflow Forecasts in the Rio Grande Headwaters. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 56(5), 882–902. ($) https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12863


Rateb, A., Scanlon, B. R., Pool, D. R., et al. (2020). Comparison of Groundwater Storage Changes From GRACE Satellites With Monitoring and Modeling of Major U.S. Aquifers. Water Resources Research, 56(12). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR027556


Reclamation. (2020). Exploring Climate and Hydrology Projections from the CMIP5 Archive. (Draft report.) US Bureau of Reclamation. [unreleased as of June 2021]


Robeson, S. M., Maxwell, J. T., and Ficklin, D. L. (2020). Bias Correction of Paleoclimatic Reconstructions: A New Look at 1,200+ Years of Upper Colorado River Flow. Geophysical Research Letters, 47(1). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GL086689


Robles, M. D., Hammond, J. C., Kampf, S. K., Biederman, J. A., and Demaria, E. M. C. (2020). Winter Inputs Buffer Streamflow Sensitivity to Snowpack Losses in the Salt River Watershed in the Lower Colorado River Basin. Water, 13(1), 3. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13010003


Solder, J. E., Beisner, K. R., Anderson, J., and Bills, D. J. (2020). Rethinking groundwater flow on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, USA: Characterizing recharge sources and flow paths with environmental tracers. Hydrogeology Journal, 28(5), 1593–1613. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10040-020-02193-z


Swain, D. L., Wing, O. E. J., Bates, P. D., et al. (2020). Increased Flood Exposure Due to Climate Change and Population Growth in the United States. Earth’s Future, 8(11). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020EF001778


Tillman, F. D., Gangopadhyay, S., and Pruitt, T. (2020b). Recent and projected precipitation and temperature changes in the Grand Canyon area with implications for groundwater resources. Nature Scientific Reports, 10(1), 19740. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-76743-6


Tran, H., Zhang, J., Cohard, J., Condon, L. E., and Maxwell, R. M. (2020). Simulating Groundwater‐Streamflow Connections in the Upper Colorado River Basin. Groundwater, 58(3), 392–405. ($) https://doi.org/10.1111/gwat.13000


Wang, J., and Schmidt, J. C. (2020). Stream flow and Losses of the Colorado River in the Southern Colorado Plateau. White Paper 5, Future of the Colorado River Project, Center for Colorado River Studies, Utah State University. https://qcnr.usu.edu/coloradoriver/files/WhitePaper5.pdf


Webb, R. W., Raleigh, M. S., McGrath, D., et al. (2020). Within‐Stand Boundary Effects on Snow Water Equivalent Distribution in Forested Areas. Water Resources Research, 56(10). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2019WR024905

Water management, planning, and policy


Escriva-Bou, A., McCann, H., Hanak, E., et al. (2020). Water Accounting in Western US, Australia, and Spain: Comparative Analysis. Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 146(3), 04020004. ($) https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)WR.1943-5452.0001157


Garcia, M., Ridolfi, E., and Di Baldassarre, G. (2020). The interplay between reservoir storage and operating rules under evolving conditions. Journal of Hydrology, 590, 125270. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2020.125270


Hadjimichael, A., Quinn, J., Wilson, et al. (2020). Defining Robustness, Vulnerabilities, and Consequential Scenarios for Diverse Stakeholder Interests in Institutionally Complex River Basins. Earth’s Future, 8(7). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020EF001503


Hobbins, M., and Barsugli, J. (2020). Threatening the vigor of the Colorado River. Science, 367(6483), 1192–1193. ($) https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abb3624


Joshi, N., Tamaddun, K., Parajuli, R., et al. (2020). Future Changes in Water Supply and Demand for Las Vegas Valley: A System Dynamic Approach based on CMIP3 and CMIP5 Climate Projections. Hydrology, 7(1), 16. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology7010016


Juricich, R. (2020). Colorado River Basin Governance, Decision Making, and Alternative Approaches. World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2020, 121–130. ($) https://doi.org/10.1061/9780784482957.013


Karambelkar, S., and Gerlak, A. K. (2020). Collaborative Governance and Stakeholder Participation in the Colorado River Basin: An Examination of Patterns of Inclusion and Exclusion. Natural Resources Journal, 60(1), 47. https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/nrj/vol60/iss1/3/


Khatri, K. B., and Strong, C. (2020). Climate Change, Water Resources, and Potential Adaptation Strategies in Utah. Utah Division of Water Resources. https://water.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Final-Report_ClimateChangeUtah_May_2020.pdf


Mumme, S. P. (2020). The 1944 Water Treaty and the Incorporation of Environmental Values in U.S.-Mexico Transboundary Water Governance. Environmental Science and Policy, 112, 126–133. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2020.05.001


Nelson, D. R., Bledsoe, B. P., and Marshall Shepherd, J. (2020). From hubris to humility: Transcending original sin in managing hydroclimatic risk. Anthropocene, 30, 100239. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ancene.2020.100239


Nielsen‐Gammon, J. W., Banner, J. L., Cook, B. I., et al. (2020). Unprecedented Drought Challenges for Texas Water Resources in a Changing Climate: What Do Researchers and Stakeholders Need to Know? Earth’s Future, 8(8). https://doi.org/10.1029/2020EF001552


Page, R., and Dilling, L. (2020). How experiences of climate extremes motivate adaptation among water managers. Climatic Change, 161(3), 499–516. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-020-02712-7


Payton, E., Smith, R., Jerla, C., and Prairie, J. (2020). Primary Planning Tools (Chapter 3). In Colorado River Basin Climate and Hydrology: State of the Science (pp. 82–111). Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado. https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/reports/8w32r663z


Reclamation. (2020). Draft 7D Report—Review of the Colorado River Interim Guidelines for Lower Basin Shortages and Coordinated Operations for Lake Powell and Lake Mead, Upper and Lower Colorado Basin Regions. US Bureau of Reclamation. https://www.usbr.gov/ColoradoRiverBasin/documents/7.D.Review_DraftReport_10-23-2020.pdf


Richter, B. D., Andrews, S., Dahlinghaus, R., et al. (2020). Buy Me a River: Purchasing Water Rights to Restore River Flows in the Western USA. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 56(1), 1–15. ($) https://doi.org/10.1111/1752-1688.12808


Rightnar, J., and Dinar, A. (2020). The Welfare Implications of Bankruptcy Allocation of the Colorado River Water: The Case of the Salton Sea Region. Water Resources Management, 34(8), 2353–2370. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s11269-020-02552-1


Sterle, K., Jose, L., Coors, S., et al. (2020). Collaboratively Modeling Reservoir Reoperation to Adapt to Earlier Snowmelt Runoff. Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 146(1), 05019021. ($) https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)WR.1943-5452.0001136


Wang, J., Rosenberg, D. E., Wheeler, K. G., and Schmidt, J. C. (2020). Managing the Colorado River for an Uncertain Future. White Paper 3, Future of the Colorado River Project, Center for Colorado River Studies, Utah State University. https://qcnr.usu.edu/coloradoriver/files/CCRS_White_Paper_3.pdf


Yang, Y. C. E., Son, K., Hung, F., and Tidwell, V. (2020). Impact of climate change on adaptive management decisions in the face of water scarcity. Journal of Hydrology, 588, 125015. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2020.125015 [select "View Open Manuscript" if no institutional access]

Water use


Joshi, N., Tamaddun, K., Parajuli, R., et al. (2020). Future Changes in Water Supply and Demand for Las Vegas Valley: A System Dynamic Approach based on CMIP3 and CMIP5 Climate Projections. Hydrology, 7(1), 16. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology7010016


Richter, B. D., Benoit, K., Dugan, J., et al. (2020). Decoupling Urban Water Use and Growth in Response to Water Scarcity. Water, 12(10), 2868. https://doi.org/10.3390/w12102868


Richter, B. D., Bartak, D., Caldwell, P., et al. (2020). Water scarcity and fish imperilment driven by beef production. Nature Sustainability, 3(4), 319–328. ($) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41893-020-0483-z


Zhang, B., Xia, Y., Long, B., et al. (2020). Evaluation and comparison of multiple evapotranspiration data models over the contiguous United States: Implications for the next phase of NLDAS (NLDAS-Testbed) development. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 280, 107810. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.agrformet.2019.107810 [select "View Open Manuscript" if no institutional access]

Water quality and sediment


Carbajal, N., Ley, Y. M.-, Soto-Jiménez, M., Páez-Osuna, F., and Tuxpan, J. (2020). Finger-like plumes of suspended sediment in the Colorado River Delta, Gulf of California. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 245, 106996. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecss.2020.106996


Dean, D. J., Topping, D. J., Grams, P. E., Walker, A. E., and Schmidt, J. C. (2020). Does Channel Narrowing by Floodplain Growth Necessarily Indicate Sediment Surplus? Lessons From Sediment Transport Analyses in the Green and Colorado Rivers, Canyonlands, Utah. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 125(11). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2019JF005414


Deemer, B. R., Stets, E. G., and Yackulic, C. B. (2020). Calcite precipitation in Lake Powell reduces alkalinity and total salt loading to the Lower Colorado River Basin. Limnology and Oceanography, 65(7), 1439–1455. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/lno.11399


East, A. E., and Sankey, J. B. (2020). Geomorphic and Sedimentary Effects of Modern Climate Change: Current and Anticipated Future Conditions in the Western United States. Reviews of Geophysics, 58(4). https://doi.org/10.1029/2019RG000692


Grams, P. E., Dean, D. J., Walker, A. E., Kasprak, A., and Schmidt, J. C. (2020). The roles of flood magnitude and duration in controlling channel width and complexity on the Green River in Canyonlands, Utah, USA. Geomorphology, 371, 107438. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2020.107438


Hensley, R. T., Spangler, M. J., DeVito, L. F., et al. (2020). Evaluating spatiotemporal variation in water chemistry of the upper Colorado River using longitudinal profiling. Hydrological Processes, 34(8), 1782–1793. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13690


Mihalevich, B. A., Neilson, B. T., Buahin, C. A., Yackulic, C. B., and Schmidt, J. C. (2020). Water Temperature Controls for Regulated Canyon‐Bound Rivers. Water Resources Research, 56(12). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2020WR027566


Rubin, D. M., Buscombe, D., Wright, S. A., et al. (2020). Causes of Variability in Suspended‐Sand Concentration Evaluated Using Measurements in the Colorado River in Grand Canyon. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 125(9). ($) https://doi.org/10.1029/2019JF005226


Saber, A., James, D. E., and Hayes, D. F. (2020). Long‐term forecast of water temperature and dissolved oxygen profiles in deep lakes using artificial neural networks conjugated with wavelet transform. Limnology and Oceanography, 65(6), 1297–1317. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/lno.11390


Walker, A. E., Moore, J. N., Grams, P. E., Dean, D. J., and Schmidt, J. C. (2020). Channel narrowing by inset floodplain formation of the lower Green River in the Canyonlands region, Utah. GSA Bulletin. ($) https://doi.org/10.1130/B35233.1

Ecosystems and environment


Arcusa, S. H., McKay, N. P., Routson, C. C., and Munoz, S. E. (2020). Dust-drought interactions over the last 15,000 years: A network of lake sediment records from the San Juan Mountains, Colorado. The Holocene, 30(4), 559–574. ($) https://doi.org/10.1177/0959683619875192


Baldwin, A. K., Spanjer, A. R., Rosen, M. R., and Thom, T. (2020). Microplastics in Lake Mead National Recreation Area, USA: Occurrence and biological uptake. PLOS ONE, 15(5), e0228896. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0228896


Butterfield, B. J., Grams, P. E., Durning, L. E., et al. (2020). Associations between riparian plant morphological guilds and fluvial sediment dynamics along the regulated Colorado River in Grand Canyon. River Research and Applications, 36(3), 410–421. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/rra.3589


Day, N. K., Schmidt, T. S., Roberts, J. J., et al. (2020). Mercury and selenium concentrations in fishes of the Upper Colorado River Basin, southwestern United States: A retrospective assessment. PLOS ONE, 15(1), e0226824. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0226824


Diehl, R. M., Wilcox, A. C., and Stella, J. C. (2020). Evaluation of the integrated riparian ecosystem response to future flow regimes on semiarid rivers in Colorado, USA. Journal of Environmental Management, 271, 111037. ($) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.111037


Goeking, S. A., and Tarboton, D. G. (2020). Forests and Water Yield: A Synthesis of Disturbance Effects on Streamflow and Snowpack in Western Coniferous Forests. Journal of Forestry, 118(2), 172–192. https://doi.org/10.1093/jofore/fvz069


Gómez‐Sapiens, M. M., Jarchow, C. J., Flessa, K. W., et al. (2020). Effect of an environmental flow on vegetation growth and health using ground and remote sensing metrics. Hydrological Processes, 34(8), 1682–1696. https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13689


Healy, B. D., Omana Smith, E. C., Schelly, R. C., Trammell, M. A., and Nelson, C. B. (2020). Establishment of a Reproducing Population of Endangered Humpback Chub through Translocations to a Colorado River Tributary in Grand Canyon, Arizona. North American Journal of Fisheries Management, 40(1), 278–292. https://doi.org/10.1002/nafm.10408


Kegerries, R. B., Albrecht, B., McKinstry, M. C., et al. (2020). Small-Bodied Fish Surveys Demonstrate Native Fish Dominance Over 300 Kilometers of the Colorado River Through Grand Canyon, Arizona. Western North American Naturalist, 80(2), 146. ($) https://doi.org/10.3398/064.080.0202


Mayes, M., Caylor, K. K., Singer, M. B., et al. (2020). Climate sensitivity of water use by riparian woodlands at landscape scales. Hydrological Processes, 34(25), 4884–4903. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13942


Nagler, P. L., Barreto‐Muñoz, A., Chavoshi Borujeni, S., et al. (2020). Ecohydrological responses to surface flow across borders: Two decades of changes in vegetation greenness and water use in the riparian corridor of the Colorado River delta. Hydrological Processes, 34(25), 4851–4883. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13911


Pennock, C. A., McKinstry, M. C., Cathcart, C. N., et al. (2020). Movement ecology of imperilled fish in a novel ecosystem: River‐reservoir movements by razorback sucker and translocations to aid conservation. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 30(8), 1540–1551. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/aqc.3399


Scamardo, J., and Wohl, E. (2020). Sediment storage and shallow groundwater response to beaver dam analogues in the Colorado Front Range, USA. River Research and Applications, 36(3), 398–409. ($) https://doi.org/10.1002/rra.3592


Stevens, L. E., Jenness, J., and Ledbetter, J. D. (2020). Springs and Springs-Dependent Taxa of the Colorado River Basin, Southwestern North America: Geography, Ecology and Human Impacts. Water, 12(5), 1501. https://doi.org/10.3390/w12051501


Szejner, P., Belmecheri, S., Ehleringer, J. R., and Monson, R. K. (2020). Recent increases in drought frequency cause observed multi-year drought legacies in the tree rings of semi-arid forests. Oecologia, 192(1), 241–259. ($) https://doi.org/10.1007/s00442-019-04550-6


Walters, D. M., Cross, W. F., Kennedy, T. A., et al. (2020). Food web controls on mercury fluxes and fate in the Colorado River, Grand Canyon. Science Advances, 6(20), eaaz4880. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aaz4880

Societal and economic issues


Wutich, A., DeMyers, C., Bausch, J. C., White, D. D., and Sullivan, A. (2020). Stakeholders and social influence in a shadow network: Implications for transitions toward urban water sustainability in the Colorado River basin. Ecology and Society, 25(1), art28. https://doi.org/10.5751/ES-11451-250128