Flaming Gorge pipeline: Aaron Million pitches the project to the Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District

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From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

“We have a fairly short window to get other users into the project before the train leaves the station,” Million told the board at its monthly meeting. The Lower Ark board agreed to consider Million’s proposal at its May meeting. The district is only being asked to declare an intent to participate, and would not pay any money at this time, Million said…

Million’s company would not own the pipeline if it is built, but instead turn it over to a special district made up of cities or agricultural districts interested in using the water. Million did not provide details on what kind of financial investment that would take or how much water would cost under the plan, but said the pipeline would have obvious benefits to Colorado by providing an additional source of clean water, improving water quality and relieving pressure on agricultural water rights. The project also fits in with both the Colorado River Compact and the Upper Colorado River Compact by developing the state’s share of water, Million said…

A second group, the Colorado-Wyoming Coalition, a coalition of water users that was organized by the South Metro Water Supply Authority that includes Donala Water and Sanitation District in the Arkansas River basin, along with major players in the South Platte basin, wants to develop the pipeline as well. Million said his plan differs substantially because he would provide some water for agriculture — “at ag prices” — that would be protected by conservation easements. He proposes cost-plus pricing for municipalities. The projected price of water could be between $15,000 to $20,000 per acre-foot at the high end of the scale, Million said.

The Arkansas Basin and Denver Metro water roundtables are studying whether to form a task force to study both Million’s proposal and the Colorado-Wyoming Coalition plan.

More Flaming Gorge Pipeline coverage here and here.

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