The Colorado Water Trust has netted sixteen offers so far for instream water for this season

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From the Colorado Water Trust “Request for Water 2012” webpage:

Many water interested people are asking about the response we received after launching Request for Water 2012; specifics are confidential at this point in time. We do not want to put any water right holder in an uncomfortable position as we screen and assess his or her water right, a valuable asset. As short-term water leases do move forward, some details around the leases will become public information.

In general, Colorado Water Trust received over 30 inquiries that rose to a significant enough level that we included them in our Inquiries database. Subsequently, we received 16 formal submissions in various states of completion (some offers will require additional approvals or supporting documentation, for example). We received offers to lease water from water users in four of Colorado’s seven basins.

We have heard that the quick deadline for submissions kept some very interested water users from entering the Request for Water 2012 pilot program. If you are one of those interested water users, we would suggest that you continue considering the program. We may open the program for late season submissions.

Please stay tuned! We will be updating our Request for Water 2012 webpage with the most up-to-date information we have to share with you. Please feel free to call and speak with anyone here at the Colorado Water Trust at any time if you have questions or concerns.

From The Aspen Times (Janet Urquhart):

The program allows the short-term allocation of water rights to keep more water in a river without jeopardizing loss of water rights for participants, according to the Water Trust, which coordinates the water “loans” and pays for the leases.

The Water Trust, its website notes, is attempting to put the never-before-used 2003 short-term water-leasing statute to work — “moving water into streams on short notice to protect aquatic habitat and riparian ecosystems during dry conditions.”

The offers to leave water in the rivers came from four of Colorado’s seven river basins, the Colorado Water Trust said Tuesday. Friday was the deadline to submit offers, which are now being analyzed.

The offers are confidential, according to Christine Hartman, operations and communications coordinator for Colorado Water Trust. Only those that result in a formal agreement between the trust, the Colorado Water Conservation Board and the water-rights holder will be made public, she said.

The program was announced in late April, and about 25 potential participants attended an informational meeting earlier this month in Carbondale to hear about the particulars of the program, said a Roaring Fork Conservancy spokesman.

More instream flow coverage here.

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