Denver Water’s sustainability ethic shines in new Administration Building. The post The future’s so bright, we put up solar panels appeared first on News on TAP.
Early storms bump Denver Water’s snowpack to third-highest levels for October. The post Pre-Halloween storms deliver shivers and snow across Colorado appeared first on News on TAP.
Denver Water teams with key partners to tackle yet another major river improvement project benefiting West Slope habitat and anglers. The post Remodeling and restoring rivers — for trout and those who hook them appeared first on News on TAP.
From The Montrose Press (Michael Cox):
Worrying about Western Slope water
While there is always noise from the Front Range about water, and there is always concern about a Front Range run on Western Slope water, Coram is less concerned about that than he is a threat from the other direction, specifically downstream on the Colorado River and the Rio Grande.
“I am not as worried about the Front Range, I am more nervous about the possibility that people will use fear (about drought) and Colorado will try to cut deals with the Lower Colorado Basin states,” Coram says. “But the water here doesn’t belong to the state, it belongs to the people. The people (who own the rights) need to be involved.”
The Colorado Water Plan is five years old. Is it functional?
“No,” says Coram. “And it won’t until it retains sustainable funding.”
The Colorado Water Plan names any number of sources for funding within the pages of the plan. One of the main sources should be the severance tax. Colorado severance tax is imposed on nonrenewable natural resources that are removed from the earth in Colorado. The tax is calculated on the gross income from oil and gas and carbon dioxide production. Anyone who receives taxable income from oil or gas produced in Colorado pays the tax.
“Water is supposed to get severance tax funds,” says Coram. “But the governor and legislators always seem to find other needs for the money. In the good years, some senator or assemblyman gets a good idea and they rob money from the severance tax.”
At this point in history Coram says the state legislature owes $300 million to the Water Plan. When the subject comes up in the halls of the Capitol, Coram says that since it appears that when water comes out of the tap, nobody seems to really care about the Water Plan funding.
From KRDO (Kolby Crossley):
The City of Colorado Springs has finally reopened Prospect Lake after elevated levels of a microcystin toxin, or blue-green algae, prompted a 12-week closure…
So after three months, what exactly brought the levels down?
“Main reason is we’ve gotten the colder temperatures,” said Rodriguez. “The lower overnight lows and during the day the highs haven’t been as high so it’s really pushed that organism to stop growing.”
Now the question is: What will the city do to try to prevent this from happening again?
They’ll be trying a new water maintenance program.
Rodriquez said the maintenance will include several products that are “more food-safe, animal-safe, people-safe so that people recreating aren’t going to be exposed to anything that’s hazardous to them but it’s also going to keep our nutrient level in check and in line.”
Rodriguez also said that they are currently working on a protocol for when it comes to testing the water in the future.
From the Twin Cities Pioneer Press (Nick Ferraro):
In what is believed to be a first for Minnesota, the state has received a request from a small Lakeville railroad company asking what it would take for them to drill two wells in Dakota County and pull out up to 500 million gallons of groundwater a year. The water would then be shipped via rail to communities near the Colorado River in the arid Southwest.
“This request represents a new kind of water use in the State of Minnesota” Georg Fischer, the county’s environmental resources director, said in an email this week to the Dakota County Board of Commissioners.
Empire Building Investments, the real estate arm of Lakeville-based Progressive Rail, submitted an application for a preliminary well assessment to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources this month proposing to build the wells on 6.2 acres the railroad owns north of Randolph.
The assessment is required before someone drills a well that would withdraw more than 1 million gallons of water a year and meant to provide information to a potential water use permit applicant to “help inform their decisions” before they purchase equipment and dig a well, said Jason Moeckel, a manager in the DNR’s ecological and water resources division…
The application indicates that two wells would be drilled to pump up to 500 million gallons of water a year, or about 3,000 gallons per minute within the Cannon River Watershed. The applicant has requested to use the Mount Simon Aquifer, the deepest aquifer in Dakota County.
The project would more than double the amount of water currently being extracted in the area right now, according to Fischer. The largest impact would likely be to the approximately 140 private drinking water wells in a 2-mile radius, with additional potential impacts to the 27 irrigation wells, he added.
Fischer said the DNR has confirmed that the venture would work with Water Train, a company currently providing water to municipal and government agencies in Colorado, Utah and Arizona. The two wells currently are the only wells the company is considering in Minnesota, he added…
Moeckel said the DNR has identified a “number of issues” with the request and that the agency is reviewing several state statutes relating to water use.
Among them, he said, state statute — passed as part of the 1989 Groundwater Protection Act — puts restrictions on new applications to use the Mount Simon aquifer within the seven-county metropolitan area. The restrictions require that the water must be used for drinking within a home or a business and cannot be used for irrigation or industrial processing.
The proposed volume of water would also trigger a mandatory environmental assessment worksheet. Water permits cannot be issued until an EAW is completed.
Dave Fellon, who owns Progressive Rail, is listed as the applicant. Reached by phone this week, Fellon said he could not comment on the proposal and that he would have someone who could return the call. No one did.
It all kind of sounds like BS to me.