Flaming Gorge Pipeline: Aaron Million says that the regulatory gauntlet will not stop him from building the pipeline

A picture named flaminggorgepipelinemillion.jpg

From the Fort Collins Coloradoan (Bobby Magill):

Million asked the Army Corps in April to halt its environmental review of the project for 60 days because the project may focus on hydropower, not just supplying water for Colorado agriculture and municipal needs. The 60 days officially runs out on July 2, but because of the Fourth of July holiday, he has until July 5 to inform the Army Corps of his intentions…

The Army Corps’ environmental review of the project was expected to continue through 2018, but Million said Thursday the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which permits hydropower projects, may be the appropriate agency to conduct the environmental review of the project because of its new focus on hydropower. FERC, he said, could fast-track the permitting of the project and approve it in about two and a half years…

Million said he and his water team will decide next week whether to formally apply for a permit for the project through FERC…

Reagan Waskom, director of the Colorado Water Institute at Colorado State University, said the task force is necessary because the state needs to have a role in the development of a Flaming Gorge pipeline. “This is a very large project with repercussions that are interstate and that are East Slope-West Slope,” Waskom said, adding that the task force will allow environmentalists and Western Slope interests to have their voices heard about a Flaming Gorge pipeline from the very beginning…

Waskom said the task force will provide a way to encourage the Colorado Water Conservation Board and the Colorado Inter-Basin Compact Committee, which includes the state’s river basin roundtables that allow local interests’ voices to be heard on water policy, to take some ownership over a Flaming Gorge pipeline project. Million said he supports the task force and will attend the Silverthorne meeting if he can…

Randy Ray, Interim Director of the Central Colorado Water Conservancy District in Greeley, said the district has committed interest in both the Regional Watershed Supply Project and the Parker district version of the Flaming Gorge pipeline. “Someone will build it,” Ray said. “Myself and the board of directors are interested in these projects and we’re watching them at a distance to see how they unfold.”

More Flaming Gorge Pipeline coverage here and here. More Colorado Wyoming Cooperative Water Supply Project coverage here.

Leave a Reply