Reagan Waskom

Former Director (retired), Colorado Water Institute

Colorado State University

Reagan Waskom

Research Interests & Background

Dr. Waskom was the Director of the Colorado Water Institute and as Director of the Colorado State University Water Center, where his responsibility was to address water research and information needs for the State of Colorado. Much of his research focused on agricultural water conservation in the Colorado River basin, surface and groundwater interactions in the S. Platte Basin, and impacts of oil & gas production on water resources in Colorado. Earlier research topics included phosphorus runoff from irrigated fields, impacts of meadow management on stream water quality, irrigation management practices in Colorado, irrigation runoff, aquifer sensitivity and vulnerability, and producer adoption of BMPs.

Selected Colorado River Publications & Presentations


Taylor, P.L., K. MacIlroy, R. Waskom, P.E. Cabot, M. Smith, A. Schempp, and B. Udall.  2019. “Every ditch is different: Barriers and opportunities for collaboration for agricultural water conservation and security in the Colorado River Basin.”   Journal of Soil and Water Conservation, 74:3, May/June; doi:10.2489/jswc.74.3.281

Pica, Nasim E., Ken Carlson, Jeffrey J. Steiner, Reagan Waskom. 2017. Produced water reuse for irrigation of non-food biofuel crops: Effects on switchgrass and rapeseed germination, physiology and biomass yield. Industrial Crops and Products, 100:65-76.

El Gafy, I., Grigg, N., and R. Waskom. 2016. Dynamic Behaviour of the Water–Food–Energy Nexus: Focus on Crop Production and Consumption. Irrigation and Drainage, doi: 10.1002/ird.2060

Waskom, Reagan, Kevin Rein, Dick Wolfe, MaryLou Smith. 2016. How Diversion and Beneficial Use of Water Affect the Value and Measure of a Water Right. Colorado Water Institute Special Report No.25.

Waskom, Reagan M., and MaryLou Smith.  2016.  “Use it or Lose It” In Colorado Water Law.  The Water Report.  Issue # 147, May 15.

Waskom, Reagan. 2013. Written Testimony of Reagan Waskom Submitted to Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources Water and Power Subcommittee Hearing on Bureau of Reclamation’s Colorado River Basin Water Supply and Demand Study. July 16.

Kiang, Julie E., J. Rolf Olsen, and Reagan M. Waskom.  2011.  Introduction to the Featured Collection on Nonstationarity, Hydrologic Frequency Analysis, and Water Management.  American Water Resources Association, 47(3):433-435, June.

Pritchett, James, Alan Bright, Andrea Shortsleeve, Jennifer Thorvaldson, Troy Bauder, and Reagan Waskom.  2009.  Public Perceptions, Preferences, and Values for Water in the West: A Survey of Western and Colorado Residents.  Colorado Water Institute, Special Report No. 17.

DiNatale, Kelly, Todd Doherty, Reagan Waskom, and Rick Brown.  2008.  Meeting Colorado’s Future Water Supply Needs: Opportunities and Challenges Associated With Potential Agricultural Water Conservation Measures.  Colorado Water Institute, Special Report No. 20.

Barta, Rachel, Robert Ward, Reagan Waskom, and Dan Smith.  2004.  Stretching Urban Water Supplies in Colorado: Strategies for Landscape Water Conservation.   Colorado Water Institute, Special Report 13.


“2020 Vision on Colorado’ Water Plan Goals: Agriculture” at the 2020 Annual Convention of the Colorado Water Congress.  Westminster, CO; January 30, 2020.

“The Changing Face of Agriculture in the South Platte Basin” at the South Platte Forum.  Westminster, CO; October 23, 2019.

“The Push for More Storage in Headwaters” at the 29th Annual Conference of the Society of Environmental Journalists.  Fort Collins, CO; October 12, 2019.

“Ag is for Everybody” at the Summer Conference of the Colorado Water Congress. Steamboat, CO; August, 20, 2019.

“Keeping Agriculture Profitable” at the annual convention of the Colorado Water Congress. Westminster, CO; February 1, 2019.

“Solving Conflict Through Prior Appropriation (sort of): The South Platte Story.”  University of Colorado.  Boulder, CO; June 8, 2018.

“Partners in Progress: Together Toward Tomorrow” at the South Platte Forum.  Loveland, CO; October 28, 2017.

"Stretching Our Water Supply: Research and Innovation” at the Law of the Rio Grande, CLE International; Santa Fe, NM; April 6, 2017

“Colorado State of Mind” TV (PBS) show, reporting on the functioning of the Interim Guidelines and the Lower Basin structural deficit.  (With Doug Kenney.)  January 21, 2016.

Presenter at the Colorado River Symposium of the Water Education Foundation, September 17-18, 2015.