Watershed Health

Water in the West seeks to address a central question: can we satisfy growing urban demand for water, maintain existing agricultural production, and sustain rural communities, while at the same time restoring rivers and protecting a growing recreational economy? Allocating water and water rights to accomplish these goals will require better science, policies, practices, and decision-making. Our interdisciplinary work strives to find solutions to the difficult problem of preserving rivers and streams while supplying adequate water to cities, farms and ranches.

What's New

March 28, 2017

Stanford’s Water in the West program ranks states in the Colorado River Basin on their use of and support for a legal tool enabling water rights holders to voluntarily transfer their water to benefit the environment.

February 19, 2016

We are excited to welcome three talented new postdoctoral scholars to Water in the West: Esther Conrad, Ben Bryant, and Sibyl Diver. Since arriving in September of 2015, Esther, who is also with Stanford Law School’s...

In Focus

Environmental Water Rights Transfers: A Review of State Laws

A new report from Water in the West explores how Western states can increase water rights transfers to maintain healthy flows for ecosystems while benefiting water rights holders.

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In the Media

April 24, 2017
Stanford News

Kimmelman Family Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute, Noah Diffenbaugh and his research group have developed a framework for testing whether global warming has contributed to particular extreme weather events.

April 18, 2017
Peninsula Press

Senior Woods Fellow, Noah Diffenbaugh discusses our current water system, climate change and the impacts it will have on precipitation in California.