CWCB: Statewide Drought Conference kicks off today

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Here’s the link to the CWCB webpage for the conference.

From the Associated Press via The Denver Post:

Water regulators are asking farmers, ranchers and other water users to share their ideas for dealing with the current drought. The Colorado Water Conservation Board is holding a conference Wednesday in Denver to share new approaches to drought preparedness. They also want information on what drought may look like under future climate change conditions.

Nearly all of Colorado has been declared a crop disaster area, and the entire state has been in either a severe, extreme or exceptional drought this summer.

I’ll be at the conference today Tweeting at hashtag #CODrought.

‘We’re still looking for no-regret or low-regret planning [for new supplies]’ — John Stulp

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From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

While some are becoming impatient with scenario planning for future state water needs, it’s still the best way to head off troubles down the road, the governor’s water adviser said this week.

“We’re still looking for no-regret or low-regret planning, so that regardless of what the future holds we’re doing what we should be doing today,” said John Stulp, who advises Gov. John Hickenlooper on water issues. Stulp also chairs the Interbasin Compact Committee, formed with basin roundtables in 2005 to resolve statewide water conflicts.

At last week’s meeting of the Arkansas Basin Roundtable, the representatives to the IBCC reported there had not been much progress made on the scenario front. Basically, the five scenarios range from a hot and crowded future to a slow-growth model in which weather follows historic patterns.

More IBCC — basin roundtables coverage here.

Drought news: Rio Grande River Basin — Record drawdown of San Luis valley aquifer

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From The Pueblo Chieftain (Matt Hildner):

The irrigation season in the San Luis Valley is limping to a close with low stream flows and a record drop in the area’s most heavily used groundwater aquifer. Craig Cotten, the state’s division engineer for the valley, said Tuesday that stream flows on the two biggest rivers in the area have dropped to near 2002 levels. That was tempered by the fact that rivers ran much higher this spring. “We had significantly more stream runoff this year than we did in 2002,” Cotten told the Rio Grande Basin Roundtable.