Opportunities for and barriers to integrating land and water management: Coordinating across sectors and scales in the Colorado River Basin

Authors: Tamee Albrecht*, University of Arizona - Geography & Development
Topics: Water Resources and Hydrology, Urban Geography
Keywords: land use, water governance, scale, integrated management
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/10/2021
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:15 AM
Room: Virtual 41
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Water sustainability in the Colorado River Basin is a growing concern due to projected increases in basin-wide water demand and worsening drought conditions. Increasingly, communities are investigating strategies to better coordinate land use planning and water resources management through water sensitive design, improved water conservation/efficiency and integrated planning. However, sectoral silos, institutional path-dependency and different spatial and administrative scales for management present barriers to coordination. Further, the effectiveness of various strategies, particularly decentralized strategies such as green infrastructure and capacity-building approaches such as cross-sector information-sharing, is not well-understood. Drawing on water governance and social-ecological systems frameworks, this study analyzes data from practitioner interviews and reports to identify what governance factors help to facilitate improved integration of land and water management. The study also identifies knowledge gaps that reveal what information would help evaluate the effectiveness of integrated land and water management strategies for improving community water sustainability.

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