Here’s an excerpt from a recent Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District eNews email:
Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper wrote a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in May requesting an expeditious conclusion to the National Environmental Policy Act study being conducted by the Army Corps for the Northern Integrated Supply Project.
In a response to the governor, Corps of Engineers Colonel Robert Ruch, responded that his agency anticipates the Supplemental Draft EIS for NISP will be released to the public in the Fall of 2013. “The size of the proposals, types of analyses, and the amount of interest they have generated has resulted in substantial reviews,” Colonel Ruch wrote. “Please be assured that I have made the review of all ongoing water supply actions in the Omaha District’s purview a high priority for my Regulatory staff.”
This was positive news on many fronts. First, is that a definite date for the release of the SDEIS has been given. The SDEIS process began in February 2009. Second, having Gov. Hickenlooper weigh in on the project is enormous. While not an endorsement, his insistence that the studies be brought to conclusion and his affirmation that wise water development, including projects like NISP, are a necessity in Colorado, was welcome indeed.
The Governor also referenced the ongoing drought in Colorado and the pressing need for water for NISP water providers. He also committed the State to moving through their approval process in a timely manner.
Governor Hickenlooper also wrote a letter to President Obama where he addressed Denver Water’s Moffat Enlargement Project and its ongoing permitting process.
In the letter he states, “Colorado is at a critical juncture in forging a more secure future for the development and management of water supplies critical to both our economy and the natural environment that makes our state so great.” Governor Hickenlooper added, “Therefore, we urge you to exercise your authority to coordinate your agencies and bring an expeditious conclusion to the federal permitting processes for this essential project, in order that we can have certainty moving forward as a state.”