February 23, 2022

Wyden, Merkley, Western Colleagues Call for Megadrought Emergency Relief

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley are joining Western colleagues in calling on Senate leadership to include $616 million in emergency drought funding and agricultural assistance in the omnibus appropriations bill as the West continues to suffer from the worst megadrought in more than 1200 years.

“The Colorado River, the lifeblood of seven western states, could lose 29 percent of its flow by the 2050s and 55 percent by 2100, and federal assistance is essential to adapt to the dramatically lower flows,” Wyden and Merkley wrote. “Many disadvantaged and tribal communities across the West are simply running out of water to drink… Communities, such as the Klamath Basin, desperately need help to avoid an economic calamity.”

The letter was led by Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. Alongside Wyden and Merkley, the letter was joined by U.S. Senators Alex Padilla, D-Calif., Mark Kelly, D-Ariz., and Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz.

The full text of the letter is here.