Colorado Water
Dazed and confused coverage of water issues in Colorado

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Thursday, January 18, 2007

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Colorado Springs has chosen a contractor for a new water treatment facility, according to the Colorado Springs Gazette. From the article, "Colorado Springs Utilities has hired a global leader in water and wastewater projects to build a $100 million sewage treatment plant south of the city to serve the Banning Lewis Ranch on the east side. MWH Americas Inc., based in Broomfield, will design and manage construction of the Clear Spring Regional Water Reclamation Facility. The firm employs 6,100 people in 36 countries on government, corporate and military projects. To be located near the Ray Nixon Power Plant about 20 miles south of Colorado Springs, the plant's first phase will begin operations in 2012 at 8 million gallons a day. The plant will be expanded to 30 million gallons when needed. The plant is being built to comply with the 20,000-acre Banning Lewis Ranch 1988 annexation agreement, which requires the developer to pay for the plant."

Meanwhile the Colorado Department of Local Affairs Municipal Water/Wastewater Enhancement and Treatment Initiative has awarded $2 million up in Routt County, according to the Steamboat Pilot & Today. They write, "More than $2 million has been awarded to three Routt County municipalities to aid pending water or wastewater treatment projects. The projects include replacing a water main in Steamboat, building a new wastewater treatment plant in Oak Creek and building a water line to Hayden's proposed site for a new police station."

Category: Colorado Water

7:06:22 AM    

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According to the Las Vegas Sun the infestation of Quagga mussels in Lake Mead seems to be localized to the lake's Boulder Basin area. From the article, "A statement from the National Park Service on Tuesday said divers found no evidence of adult, invasive mussels at Temple Bar, on the Arizona side of Lake Mead, or at the Willow Beach National Fish Hatchery, Cottonwood Cove and Willow Beach marinas on the Arizona side of Lake Mohave, about 12 miles south of Hoover Dam."

Category: Colorado Water

6:48:21 AM    

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The Northern Colorado Water Conservation District was over in Glenwood Springs yesterday briefing water officials on the proposed Yampa Straw, according to the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. From the article, "To stay out of the crosshairs, Northern commissioned a study by the engineering firm Black & Veatch to look into ways of meeting a projected need of 400,000 acre-feet of water in the South Platte River Basin by 2030. The study says meeting those growth needs would require drying up 133,000 to 226,000 acres of farmland in the South Platte Basin. Rather than dry up farmland, the study said a 500,000-ace-foot reservoir could be constructed on the Yampa below Maybell. A system of pipes, pumps and tunnels could be built for $3.2 billion, or about $11,000 per acre-foot, to deliver the water to the northern Front Range. It would cost about $3.9 billion, or about $13,000 per acre foot, to deliver it to Denver. 'This compares very favorably to cost projections for projects Denver metro water suppliers are considering,' Northern said in a press release about the project. The project would divert about 20 percent of the Yampa River water that now leaves the state, Northern said. 'The one missing item for the West Slope and the River District board is whether there is any kind of mitigation, any compensation for water lost to the West Slope,' [Chris Treese of the Colorado River Water Conservation District] said. 'It is not in the study and was apparently never part of the scope of the study.'"

Category: Colorado Water

6:42:20 AM    

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Here's a report on the goings on in the Colorado River Basin Roundtable, from the Glenwood Springs Post Independent (free registration required). From the article, "In December, the Colorado River Basin Roundtable considered eight proposals for project money ranging from water availability studies on the Roaring Fork to development of a whitewater kayaking park near Palisade. One of the proposals, which will be submitted to the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) for funding, is an assessment of potential water needs for energy development in the northwest corner of the state. 'The big concern as energy develops in the state is where the water will come from,' said Dave Merritt, chief engineer with the Glenwood Springs-based Colorado River Water Conservation District. The Yampa/White River and Colorado River roundtable groups joined forces on the project proposal. The collaboration made sense, given the current levels of oil and gas production within those basins, in Rio Blanco and Garfield counties, as well as expected oil shale development...

"Energy development, whether natural gas, oil shale or coal, will require huge amounts of water. According to the project's grant application, water will be needed for development of the resources, especially for oil shale and electrical generation...

"For the short term, while the research continues on the BLM leases, power will come from existing plants, Birch said. But when the companies go to commercial production, energy requirements will grow exponentially, necessitating on-site coal or natural gas-fired electrical plants. Demands on local towns and cities will also increase with the expected influx of thousands of energy workers. According to the grant application, which cited an estimate by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Technology Laboratory, oil shale will bring in 70,000 new workers to Colorado and Utah where that development is expected to take place."

Category: Colorado Water

6:32:59 AM    

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