Natural Resources

Department of Natural Resources



Colorado will be a national leader in promoting the responsible use and conservation of the state’s natural resources for this and future generations.


The Colorado Department of Natural Resources mission is to develop, preserve and enhance the state's natural resources for the benefit and enjoyment of current and future citizens and visitors.

  • Water - Provide for the long-term municipal, industrial, and agricultural water needs for the state in a way that recognizes and provides for the instream flow needs of fish, wildlife, and recreation.
  • State Parks - Maintain accessible, affordable, and diverse outdoor recreation opportunities and promote natural resource education.
  • Minerals & Energy - Responsibly regulate the sustainable development of Colorado’s energy and mineral resources in a manner that protects public safety, the environment, wildlife, and maintains Colorado’s quality of life.
  • Wildlife - Manage and conserve healthy and sustainable wildlife populations for the benefit of current and future Coloradans.
  • State Trust Lands – Manage state lands held in perpetual, inter-generational trusts for the benefit and support of public schools and other public institutions.

Department Description

The Colorado Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is responsible for the management of the water, land, wildlife, minerals/energy resources, and outdoor recreation of the state. In addition to the Executive Director’s Office, DNR has six divisions:

  • Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW)
  • Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB)
  • Division of Reclamation, Mining, and Safety (DRMS)
  • Division of Water Resources (DWR)
  • Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC)
  • State Board of Land Commissioners (SLB)

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center is also a part of DNR, administered as a special program within the Executive Director’s Office. Collectively, these divisions carry out the Department’s responsibilities for natural resource management, which includes providing access to and protecting or preserving Colorado’s natural resources.

Performance Plans