Posted on August 21, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
The confluence of Havasu Creek with the Colorado River (river mile 157) is a popular place for boaters to stop and admire the striking blue-green water of Havasu Creek. The turquoise color is caused by water with a high mineral content. At the point where the blue creek meets the turbid colorado river there often appears a definite break. NPS photo by Erin Whittaker.
Fish in the Grand Canyon show levels of mercury and selenium that exceed risk thresholds for wildlife
FRISCO — Pollution runs deep in the Colorado River, according to U.S. Geological Survey scientists who recently documented traces of mercury and selenium contamination in fish living in the Grand Canyon.
Similar studies have documented mercury contamination in fish in Rocky Mountain National Park. In the bigger picture, the USGS has also documented mercury contamination in 25 percent of U.S. streams. In the Arctic, polar bears are being exposed to similar contaminants. Continue reading
Filed under: Environment | Tagged: Colorado River, Environment, Grand Canyon, Mercury, pollution, Selenium | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 16, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
‘Forbearance’ of water use eyed as new tool in race to avoid water crisis
FRISCO — Water allocation in the Colorado River Basin may be entering a new era, officials said last week as they announced finalization of 10 pilot projects that will allow farmers, municipalities and other water users to voluntarily and temporarily forego use of their water in exchange for compensation.
The pilot projects, including one in the Yampa River Basin, are the result of a cooperative effort by Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico to shore up declining reservoir levels if the 15-year drought that has plagued the Colorado River continues into the future. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, Environment, rivers, water | Tagged: Colorado River, compact call, drought, Lake Powell, water conservation, western water | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 9, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
‘Deep Creek’s lower elevation intact ecosystem would contribute to diversity of the national Wild and Scenic River system …’
After seven years of study, the U.S. Forest Service says Deep Creek, in noerthwestern Colorado, is suitable for wild and scenic status.
FRISCO — The U.S. Forest Service says that Colorado’s Deep Creek, flowing out of the Flat Tops Wilderness Area, meets all the criteria for designation as a wild and scenic river.
The agency finalized its determination last month under a decision signed by White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams, who explained that there no private lands within the Forest Service segment corridor, and that no existing water rights would not be affected by designation.
The Colorado Natural Heritage Program described Deep Creek as having one of the most pristine, intact canyon landscapes in Colorado, with several state and globally rare species.
“Deep Creek’s lower elevation intact ecosystem would contribute to diversity of the national Wild and Scenic River system,” Fitzwilliams wrote in the formal Record of Decision. Continue reading
Filed under: Colorado, Colorado River, Environment, rivers, US Forest Service | Tagged: Colorado, Colorado River, Deep Creek, public lands, U.S. Forest Service, wild and scenic rivers | 1 Comment »
Posted on June 24, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
The steady drop in Lake Mead’s water level is a sign of the West’s long-term drought.
Some states may see water cuts in years ahead
FRISCO — Early summer runoff is surging high in the headwaters of the Colorado River, but far below, in the Nevada desert, the water is draining out of Lake Mead faster than the river can replenish it.
The giant reservoir this week hit a new all-time low level, dropping just below 1,075 feet above sea level — a warning sign that some states may have to curtail their use of Colorado River water in the years ahead. Continue reading
Filed under: climate change, Colorado, Colorado River, Environment, rivers, water | Tagged: climate change, Colorado River, Lake Mead, Lake Powell, western drought | 2 Comments »
Posted on May 21, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Tracking the Colorado water plan update via Twitter …
And who speaks for the critters?
Not much diversity in the CWCB meeting room at this remote semi-rural golf course clubhouse near Sterling. Continue reading
Filed under: Colorado, Colorado River, Environment, greenhouse gases | Tagged: Colorado, Colorado River, Colorado water plan, Colorado's water plan, water | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 21, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Smart water management and conservation can help reduce drought pressure in the West
Frost-tinged trees gleam in the morning light along the Blue River, a key Colorado River tributary north of Silverthorne, Colorado.
FRISCO — Efforts to conserve water in the drought-stricken Colorado River Basin and across the West got a major boost from the Obama administration this week. Federal resource managers this week announced a $50 million investment to improve water efficiency and conservation in California and 11 other western states. Continue reading
Filed under: Colorado, Colorado River, Environment | Tagged: California drought, climate, Colorado, Colorado River, conservation, drought, water conservation | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 20, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
In-depth coverage of the Colorado water plan is unfolding in a new series of stories for the Colorado Independent
Gotta love that Colorado River. Want to help save it? Conserve! @bberwyn photo.
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Colorado’s creeping water crisis isn’t as dramatic as a wildfire or a flood, but its consequences could be just as severe. State and federal water experts say the state will see a huge gap between supply and demand within a few decades, and possibly sooner if regional drought continues. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Colorado River, Environment, politics, rivers, water | Tagged: Colorado River, Colorado water plan, Colorado water shortages, drought, Environment, water conservation | 1 Comment »