Where does your water come from?
Over the decades, Phoenix has developed a diverse portfolio of water supplies to meet the city's water needs.
Your water comes from one of these four main categories of supply:
- Surface and groundwater from the Salt River Project (SRP);
- Water from the Colorado River, delivered through the Central Arizona Project (CAP);
- Ground water pumped from the City's wells; and
- Reclaimed water.
Caption plum:Central Arizona Project Canal west of Phoenix
The Central Arizona Project (CAP) conveys water about 190 miles from the Colorado River at Lake Havasu on the Arizona-California border through a system of canals to Phoenix, Tucson and beyond. The CAP system includes a series of pumps and an integral storage reservoir at Lake Pleasant. The system is capable of carrying up to 1.8 million acre-feet each year. Visit Related Links in the bottom left corner of this page for more information on the CAP.
The Salt River Project (SRP) conveys surface water from the Verde River and Salt River watersheds that lie to the north and east of Phoenix. The SRP system is composed of six dams, 1,300 miles of canals and 255 high-capacity wells. Phoenix water treatment plants receive about 20 percent of the roughly one million acre-feet of water delivered each year by SRP to the metropolitan area.
Unlike the other sources of supplies - which can be used by anyone within the city limits - SRP supplies are available only to certain parts of the city, referred to as "on-project" lands. Visit Related Links in the bottom left corner of this page for more information on SRP.
The watersheds of the Salt, Verde and Colorado Rivers cover large areas of the Western U.S., including areas far from Phoenix. Because of this, wet or dry conditions can vary considerably from what we are experiencing in the Phoenix area in any given year.
Caption plum:Salt and Verde River Watersheds. Map courtesy Salt River Project.
Having diverse supplies helps the city in planning for future growth and coping with shortages. The CAP accounts for around two-fifths of the water supply. SRP supplies account for about one-half. The remainder of your water comes from wells or is recycled water.
You can learn more about your water supply in the 2011 Water Resources Plan
Where can I find out more?