Washington, D.C. — Legislation introduced earlier this year by Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva, which will authorize the Secretary of the Interior to participate in a reclamation and riparian restoration project, has passed the U.S. House of Representatives today.
The Avra/Black Wash Reclamation and Riparian Restoration Project (H.R. 325) will amend the Reclamation Wastewater and Groundwater Study and Facilities Act to authorize the Secretary of the Interior to provide federal funds to help in the construction of water recycling facilities in order to enhance and restore riparian habitat in the Black Wash Sonoran Desert ecosystem in Avra Valley.
The bill now awaits action by the U.S. Senate.
“The extremely arid climate of our area requires careful and innovative planning of both water supply and wastewater treatment systems,” said Grijalva. “Ongoing population growth in southern Arizona is creating increasing demands for both water consumption and riparian habitat. This bill will protect our valuable natural resources and some of the last remaining productive riparian areas.”
The proposed Avra Valley Reclamation and Riparian Restoration Site would spread treated wastewater on mesquite riparian forest in Black Wash, creating valuable riparian habitats for migrating birds, while recharging groundwater for the greater Tucson area.