Colorado Water
Dazed and confused coverage of water issues in Colorado

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Congress has failed so far to fully fund President Bush's request for solar energy research, according to the Denver Post. From the article, "New solar-energy research pushed by President Bush last year is on hold in Colorado labs because the last Congress failed to pass several budget bills. Funding for a proposal to build a $300 million underground laboratory near Empire could be delayed for a year. And federal research groups across the state have frozen hiring, limited travel and delayed computer updates. From the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Boulder, scientists are spending conservatively as they wait to see how the new Congress appropriates funds. In December, the outgoing Congress passed a 'continuing resolution,' which holds budgets at about 2006 levels through Feb. 15, said Drew Nannis, spokesman for U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo. Later this month, Congress will probably continue the resolution through the end of September, Nannis said, but it may make some exceptions for programs expecting major increases."

Category: 2008 Presidential Election

6:30:35 AM    

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Here's a short article about the South Platte and Arkansas River basins and the early snowpack from They write, "For only the second time, Denver Water's reservoirs gained storage during the month of December, thanks to the back-to-back snowstorms. The last time that happened was when the 1982 Christmas blizzard hit the Front Range...After years of drought, the two river basins on the Eastern Plains are both well ahead of the rest of the state, which averages 98 percent. The Arkansas is 134 percent of the 30-year average and the South Platte is 128 percent. A week ago Denver Water said it had 89 percent of its average volume, compared to 81 percent average for the same date."

Category: Colorado Water

6:08:33 AM    

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Mountain Mail: "Government officials and water managers from throughout the area convened Thursday at the Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District offices in Salida to discuss a potential study of ground water in the Upper Arkansas River Valley. Hydrologist Ken Watts of the United States Geologic Survey presented preliminary ideas as to what information a study could uncover and the methods he and his colleagues would use. The water district partnered with the USGS earlier this decade to study shallow parts of the aquifer. A second study would investigate deeper levels of groundwater and provide a basis for growth and development planning within the basin. Groundwater supports growth by supplying well water to homes located in unincorporated parts of Chaffee County. The water district is responsible for replacing the water drawn by wells back into the Arkansas River to satisfy downstream water rights. Water district manager Terry Scanga said the study would help define the size of the aquifer and the rate at which it is recharged."

Should Lake County be part of the Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District? From the article, "Representatives of the Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District made a recent overture to the board of Lake County Commissioners as part of an ongoing discussion about including Lake County in the district. UAWCD manager Terry Scanga reported particulars of a December meeting with Lake County officials Thursday during the district's regular board meeting. Lake County officials have been considering joining a water district since voters gave them the go-ahead in a 2005 ballot question. After the question passed, Lake County citizens formed a water advisory council to study the possibility of joining a water district. The group has since opened a dialogue with the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District and the Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District in addition to the UAWCD."

Category: Colorado Water

6:00:19 AM    

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Here's an update on efforts to control Quagga mussels in Lake Mead from From the article, "The task force of state and federal agencies are working on plans to eradicate or control the mussels at Mead, prevent their spread into the lower Colorado River and other waterways, and educate the public on how to prevent spreading them. One option being discussed is an emergency regulation empowering DFG to inspect and decontaminate boats. Today, divers at Mead will try to determine the density of the mussels and how widely they are spread. Monitoring of the lower Colorado River has already begun, Martarano said. Boaters leaving any lake, river or other body of water are urged to: Remove any mud, plants, fish or animals before transporting equipment; Eliminate water from equipment before transporting; Clean and dry anything that came in contact with water (boats, trailers, equipment, clothing, dogs etc.); Never release plants, fish or animals into a body of water unless they came out of that body of water."

Category: Colorado Water

5:52:39 AM    

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Northern Colorado farmers whose wells were shut down last summer are hoping to get a separate (from the South Platte), aquifer designation for Box Elder Creek, according to the From the article, "Some northern Colorado farmers who had their wells shut off last summer will make their case this week that their pumping doesn't hurt the South Platte River. A multi-day hearing starting Tuesday before the Colorado Ground Water Commission will examine a petition to create the new Box Elder Creek groundwater basin in Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Elbert, and Weld counties. The petition asking the state to designate about 300,000 acres as a water basin, is part of a solution sought by farmers to prevent the same conditions where farmers lost crops after the state shutdown some 400 wells...

"Several ditch companies, cities and major water providers, including Aurora, Greeley, Sterling, Denver Water, and Denver International Airport, oppose the plan."

Category: Colorado Water

5:47:53 AM    

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Grand Junction Daily Sentinel: "The town of Palisade, the city of Grand Junction, the Bureau of Land Management and Genesis Gas and Oil will host a second community meeting about the watersheds on Jan. 30 at the Palisade Community Center. The meeting is tentatively scheduled for 6:30 p.m."

Thanks to Colorado Confidential for the link.

Category: Colorado Water

5:32:00 AM    

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