Arkansas Valley Super Ditch update

A picture named arkbasinditchsystem.jpg

From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

Water rights holders representing 67 percent of the land and 70-75 percent of the water under seven ditches proposed for inclusion in Super Ditch returned cards indicating they might be interested in selling water through a lease program, said Peter Nichols, water attorney for the district. If those who sign up accept contracts — they’re under no obligation to do so — there would be more than ample water to fill the current demand, Nichols said.

The Super Ditch has letters of agreement to supply water up to 8,000 acre-feet annually to El Paso County water users for 40 years and up to 140,000 acre-feet over the next 37 years to Aurora…

The Lower Ark district mailed cards to all shareholders on the Bessemer, Catlin, Fort Lyon, Holbrook, High Line, Otero and Oxford ditches last fall in order to identify the potential source of water under its application in Water Court. The deadline for returning the cards is Feb. 15. While some in the Super Ditch asked the Lower Ark district to directly contact water rights owners who have not signed on, the district has resisted. “If people don’t participate, we’re not going to twist their arms,” said Jay Winner, general manager. “It’s an individual choice.”[…]

Meanwhile, the district is moving ahead on several fronts to support the Super Ditch. It is requesting a $225,000 grant from the Colorado Water Conservation Board for engineering that would determine how to move water to Lake Pueblo, and a separate $28,000 grant to develop an online tool that would help farmers decide whether a lease program makes sense.

More Arkansas Valley Super Ditch coverage here and here.

Leave a Reply