Santa Cruz River, AZ | Julius Schlosburg
Santa Cruz River, AZ | Julius Schlosburg

Santa Cruz River

Given the threats of climate change and legislation, the story of the Santa Cruz River is a bellwether for the entire nation. With local and nationwide support, we intend to bring the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service here to southern Arizona to establish a Santa Cruz River Urban National Wildlife Refuge. Protecting this river is of nationwide importance.

Dr. Luke Cole, director, Santa Cruz River Program Director

Threat: Water Scarcity

The Santa Cruz River was once a desert oasis that was dried up and polluted for decades – and only recently is it coming back to life. However, climate change and water scarcity threaten progress to ensure clean, flowing water in the river. What’s more, rollbacks to clean water protections at the federal level could add new challenges to the health of the watershed longer term. To ensure this river remains a community treasure, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should establish an Urban National Wildlife Refuge. 

American Rivers appreciates the collaboration and efforts of our partners:
  • Sonoran Institute