One wet winter won't save the Colorado River, but it still helps Phoenix

By Lauren Gilger
Published: Wednesday, February 15, 2023 - 12:35pm
Updated: Thursday, February 16, 2023 - 7:46am

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Arizona has had a wetter-than-normal winter so far.

In January alone, the National Weather Service says the Phoenix area was three degrees below normal on average, with more than an inch of rain recorded. 

All of that water doesn’t do much to help the dire situation on the Colorado River, which is drying up so fast the federal government is stepping in to demand massive cuts from all six states that use its water. 

Upper Salt River
Erica Apodaca/Cronkite News
The upper Salt River.

Phoenix gets water from two main sources. About 60% of it comes from the Salt and Verde rivers, which are fed by snowpack in the mountains and on the Mogollon Rim. The other 40% or so comes from the Colorado River — and that’s where the state is likely facing big cuts. 

But it’s not all bad news.

The Show sat down with Cynthia Campbell, the water resources management advisor for the city of Phoenix, who said rain in the Valley and snow up north certainly helps boost at least one big part of the local water supply. 

Cynthia Campbell
City of Phoenix
Cynthia Campbell

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