Urban residents do not want future water supplies to be taken from agriculture, according to CSU study


From The Greeley Tribune (Eric Brown) via Windsor Now!:

Referring to a study conducted by students and peers last year, [James Pritchett an] associate professor of agriculture and economics at Colorado State University told the crowd that taking water from farmers is the last thing residents of the Western United States want to do in efforts to secure their water futures. That survey was based on responses from 6,250 individuals with varying backgrounds and living across 12 states. During his “Irrigated Agriculture in the South Platte Valley in 2050” presentation Thursday at Randy’s All-American Grill, Pritchett said buying water from farmers finished far behind other water security alternatives, like constructing pipelines, requiring in-home conservation, limiting growth of cities, building reservoirs and reusing water in private homes and on private lawns and public landscapes. Municipalities have frequently bought agriculture land for water rights in efforts to meet their future needs, as Pritchett mentioned during his presentation…

That same study showed that people were also willing to also pay an extra monthly fee to fund efforts that would help keep water in agriculture, with respondents saying, on average, they’d pay $16 more per month for that cause. “I think that myself, and probably many others, always believed that people in cities were saying ‘go out and get more water for us and we don’t care how you get it,’ ” said Weld County Farmers Union president Ray Peterson. “It was good to hear that people are actually thinking about where their water is coming from.”

More South Platte River basin coverage here.

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