WIT Press

Surface Water Management Model For The Colorado River Basin


Free (open access)

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35 - 46




2,098 kb


H. Sanvicente-Sánchez, E. González, C. Patiño & A. Villalobos


The Colorado River Basin is a complex system of water resources, operated to meet multiple objectives and to satisfy two treaties, an interstate one into the United States and also an international treaty between Mexico and the United States. At the beginning of this century (2000-2004), an intense drought caused that the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR), who operates the system, began an investigation to establish rules that would let operate the system in conditions of scarcity. This study finished in December of 2007 and proposed a number of operational alternatives, which have been implemented in the \“Colorado River Simulation System” (CRSS) that works at the RiverWare platform, but that just cover the United States portion of the binational Colorado River Basin. Based on this work, the National Water Commission of Mexico (CONAGUA) recognizes the importance of having a model equivalent to the CRSS, but including both the Mexican and U.S. sides. Then, Mexico would be in the possibility to evaluate water management alternatives proposed by the USBR. Additionally, the CONAGUA, the International Boundary Water Commission (CILA), and Mexican water users could perform their own analysis for the Mexican area. This paper presents the description of the general operational rules for the whole Colorado River Basin, as well as its implementation in the \“Water Evaluation and Planning System” (WEAP) platform. Keywords: water management, Colorado River Basin, WEAP platform, transboundary river basin management.


water management, Colorado River Basin, WEAP platform, transboundary river basin management