Originally Posted by RDNEK
SO how is 195 MILLION more to take water out of the ark at Otero (above the numbers) a good thing???
This bill will = less water in the ark and roaring fork rivers and more water for the front range... At least read these things!!!
Maybe all the money Denver water's is putting into its great marketing effort gets the rangers believe there is more water in the ark... When this bill will = more water taken out of not only the Ark but will also = less water in the roaring fork...
Funny how twisted these bills get and how little most people put into understanding them...
Just took a look at the bill and did some digging. Christian, you didn't read all 1248 pages? Did you REDNEK? I doubt it. I didn't read it all either, but the did some selective searching.
As for NEK's assertion that there will be more water taken out at Otero, I could not find Otero listed once in the entire document. I'm gonna call bullshit on that one, unless NEK can provide a reference. The PDF has a search function, to facilitate looking things up. Otero was constructed in 1967 and has 161 cfs of pump capacity, and there is no mention in the entire bill of changing anything at otero, and the bill doesn't have the jurisdiction to change water law and allocations.
What the bill does call for is federal help constucting the arkansas valley conduit. This feature would tap into pueblo res, and transport water from pueblo res to downstream rural communities along the ark (ie Lamar). The $195 MM NEK quotes sounds like the feds committment to fund 65% of a $300 MM ark valley conduit project.
A quick search on the ark valley conduit reveals that the project was approved in the original fry-ark project way back when, but never constructed. It was not constructed becuase the rural communities it would serve could not afford to build it, or the pay back terms in the original legislation.
It should be noted that downstream communities already have water rights to a small portion of the water in pueblo res, they just haven't been exercising their rights to it, mainly due to cost. Federal safe drinking water laws have apparently made it hard for rural towns to comply with the new requirements since the wells that they get their water from have higher than allowed concentrations of impurities. The ark valley conduit would be a way to transport clean water to rural communities, which total 68,000 people along the ark river downstream of pueblo.
Even through NEK takes every chance he gets to take a pot shot at Denver or Denver water, this legislation has no connection to Denver water. Sorry NEK, start another thread to whine about Denver.
As I looked through the bill I saw A LOT of good stuff. This bill is the largest increase in wilderness protection and wild and scenic river protection in a long time. It gives wilderness protection to RMNP and also protects land in the escalante / dominguez area, which is of course a favorite of colorado boaters... very cool. This list of good stuff goes on an on, hundreds of pages of it.
I read through the section of the bill of the arkansas valley conduit, and its a bunch of mumbo jumbo that seems to relate to how the project will get funded. Since there is nothing about otero in it, I don't see how it could relate to any less water in the ark in any fashion.
Also, capermikes comment about the grand ditch section being bad for the colorado is misleading. All that section does is allow water supply CO to continue to operate the grand ditch even though they made a bunch of RMNP wilderness. The grand ditch feeds long draw reservior, which is the key to late season big south runs. This is one of those instances where boaters have some benefit from water systems. I'll gladly take the late season big south runs, when lots of other stuff is starting to run dry. This doesn't change the colorado, but just keeps things the same from that perspective.
All in all, I think its a good thing.
Here is a link to a brief summary of some colorado impacts...
President Obama signs public lands bill which includes Arkansas Valley Conduit authorization « Coyote Gulch