Originally Posted by yetigonecrazy
^ i agree completely.
I think the funniest thing about the entire Western Slope diversion complex is the "movers and shakers" on the Front Range come up all the crazy, grand ideas for diversions, hundreds of new and different proposals every year, but somehow, in all of those proposals over the past forty years, not once has there been a proposal that says: "Stop watering your lawn so much". Or never one that says "Let's NOT build a bunch of new golf courses".
Its always take, take, take, never a "let's see what we can do by ourselves."
You're off on this. Denver Water has led a very strong marketing campaign with the focus on conservation. Probably one of my favorite and IMO best put-together campaign in the city (and I'm a marketing major). There are signs on the buses, newsletters and flyers, yard signs in all of the zero-scaped yards in my neighborhood, and billboards explaining when it is okay to water.
Further, many of the newer developments in urban areas are being built with zero-scapes, or small yards with a trade off for shared parks with limited and/or gray watering.
That said Denver is a very attractive place to live. Just take a look at all of the license plates that say New Orleans on them. Even if the city continues to conserve water, the amount of growth leads to far more demand than that saved by proper conservation. Until the Front Range (and Colorado in general... think Pagosa Springs, the Ark Valley, GJ, Montrose) stop growing then the demand for water will only increase and the supply won't change.
Although there are plenty of water-wasting sprawl and suburban type developments that keep there lawns way to green in an arid area without trees (Commerce City and Parker), the water isn't being taken from the west slope solely to make green yards. It's taken for people to drink and use inside of there houses. I agree with Basil that water used for peoples needs trump recreation, and unfortunately the environment by the average american. You can stop the diversions by having people move to the west slope, but it won't stop the demand for more than what is available.
But to actually answer the question... 1. I'm against the diversion and hugely against making Gross Res larger. USB is the best hard-man's V+ run on the Front Range. Shortening the length of whitewater and potentially burying RIMBY would suck (there's another post on this). LSB doesn't compare in quality and Eldo is too manky, so even with an extended season on these it still wouldn't be worth it. Not to mention the environmental impact on the forest around Gross, or the longer paddle out.
3. The alternative is to do nothing. Stop supplying more water than what already comes to the front range, and stop all non-zero-scaping developments, and developments away from city centers. Further encourage urban development and urban renewal programs backed by public transit as an alternative to public sprawl. No new lawns.
4. Kayaking doesn't do shit for the local economy. Locals rarely kayak SBC, out of towners almost never kayak it, and there isn't much of an economy up there to start with. It's all dependent on the FR.