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BLM partners in river drought

ARIZONA – The Bureau of Land Management has announced an $11.1 million cooperative agreement with the Foundation for America’s Public Lands, BLM’s official charitable partner, to improve drought resilience in the Colorado River Basin. The funding is being invested through the Inflation Reduction Act under the Biden-Harris Administration’s Investing in America agenda.
“Westerners rely on clean, cold water for everything from drinking to fishing to running businesses,” said BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning. “We’re so pleased to work with the Foundation for America’s public lands to leverage these critical funds to Invest in America and the health of our public lands and waters in the Colorado River basin.” 
“Nearly 40 million Americans rely on a healthy Colorado River Basin to sustain their livelihoods — but unprecedented drought is posing an existential threat to their communities, landscapes, and economies,” said I Ling Thompson, CEO of the Foundation for America’s Public Lands. “Now is the time to ensure our public lands and waters are healthy and sustainable. By investing in restoration projects in partnership with local communities, we can strengthen the resilience of the American West so that future generations can thrive for years to come.” 
The BLM is responsible for managing more public land than any other federal agency in the Colorado River Basin. Drought has been identified as the single most pressing threat to the Colorado River Basin, affecting agriculture, grazing, wildlife and fisheries, recreation, cultural resource uses, and power generation and distribution.  
The Foundation for America’s Public Lands is the official charitable partner of the BLM. Chartered by Congress in 2017 and officially formed in 2022, the Foundation operates and raises private funds to help raise awareness, increase access, and inspire stewardship of more than 245 million acres of U.S. public lands and waters.
The agreement is good for five years and allows the Foundation to involve other partner organizations as technical experts. The Foundation intends to conduct the project on a landscape scale, both geographically across multiple states and over time by investing in the communities that live, work, recreate and manage the land.  
BLM and the Foundation hope that additional community-based partnerships will be built, creating opportunities to establish innovative approaches.