Mesa County Town Hall Meeting

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Mesa County Town Hall Meeting

  1. 1. Mesa County Town Hall Public Meeting April 3, 2014
  2. 2. Agenda  Mesa County Water  Background  Colorado Basin Roundtable  Colorado Water Plan  Basin Implementation Plan (BIP)  BIP Project Status  Where have we been?  Where are we going?  Breakout Sessions  This is your plan  Input
  3. 3. Mesa County Water Supplies Drinking water from Grand Mesa & the Colorado River Irrigation water from the Colorado River & Gunnison River Ute Water reservoirs near Mesa Grand Junction watershed (Kannah Cr) Grand Valley Irrigation Canal diversion (1882; valley’s oldest)
  4. 4. Grand Valley Irrigation Providers
  5. 5. Water Quality Challenges Salt & Selenium Control program funded canal lining, other irrigation improvements.
  6. 6. Endangered Fish of the Colorado River Basin Colorado pikeminnow Ptychocheilus lucius Razorback sucker Xyrauchen texanus Humpback chub Gila cypha Bonytail Gila elegans
  7. 7. Endangered Fish of the Colorado River Basin  “15-mile reach” between Roller Dam and Gunnison River inflow is critical habitat.  Both transmountain diverters & west slope water users provide water for fish flows.  Recovery efforts have funded canal improvements that allow full deliveries while leaving more water in the river.
  8. 8. Background  Basin Roundtables  Colorado Water Plan  Basin Implementation Plan
  9. 9. Governor’s Executive Order - What?  Executive Order signed in May of 2013  Plan will be prepared by the 9 Roundtables  Draft on State’s desk by July 2014  Plan has to show how we meet the consumptive and non-consumptive Gap  48,000 AFY Consumptive Gap  64 Critical Reaches Nonconsumptive Gap  Planning horizon is 2050
  10. 10. Governor’s Executive Order-Why?  The “Gap” between future demand and future projects is real….500,000 acre-feet per year  Population  Statewide growth to double from 5 to 10 million  Fastest growth will be in the Colorado Basin Counties, more than 240%  Mesa County growth projected to be 190%  Drought  Transfer of water rights from agriculture is unacceptable  500,000 to 700,000 acres ag to urban transfers Statewide  Water quality impacts are becoming acute  Interstate issues pressing  Front Range new supply project
  11. 11. Your Opportunity  CWP is an opportunity to transition from an individual perspective to a regional perspective.
  12. 12. BIP Project Status – Where Have we Been?
  13. 13. Project Status – Where are we Going?
  14. 14. Colorado Basin Population Projections County 2000 Population 2030 Population Increase in Population 2000 to 2030 Percent Change 2000 to 2030 Percent Annual Growth Rate Eagle 43,300 86,900 43,600 101 2.3 Garfield 43,800 119,900 76,100 274 5.2 Grand 12,900 28,800 15,900 123 2.7 Mesa 116,250 220,600 104,350 190 3.8 Pitkin 15,900 27,200 11,300 71 1.8 Summit 25,700 50,400 24,700 96 2.3 TOTAL 248,000 492,600 244,600 99 2.3 Population doubling Ref: SWSI and AGNC
  15. 15. Population – Increasing, No “New” Water….Reallocation of existing use. Many uses compete for a scarce and limited water supply Municipal & Industrial 9% Agriculture 86% Recreation Environment 22 Graphics provided by the Colorado Foundation for Water Education.
  16. 16. Conservation Ag to Urban Transfers New Projects (Colorado Basin development) How can we Fill the Gap? Already planned projects (Windy Gap firming, Moffat Collection System) + Graphics provided by the Colorado Foundation forWater Education
  17. 17. Threats, Challenges, Issues  Compact Calls  Transbasin diversions  Endangered Species  Growth separation of land use and water planning  Energy/Conditional Water Rights  Shoshone Call  Loss of agriculture  Climate change
  18. 18. Imbalances between Supply and Demand (US BOR) - Exacerbate Current Stresses
  19. 19. Lake Powell Elevations
  20. 20. Colorado Basin Roundtable Tasks  Assess internal needs & identify projects to meet them  Negotiate how to meet state needs.
  21. 21. No Water to Support Other Basins  Colorado Basin already has 100,000 AFY ag shortage  SWSI - our basin will lose addl 80,000 acres  Water Providers vulnerable to drought and compact call  BOR study indicates shortage of 3.2 Million AFY with current hydrology (Lake Powell and Mead)  64 critical reaches already (headwater streams impaired)  Uncertain future  Risk is non starter  Firming and IPP’s and growing into existing water rights will divert addl 150,000 AFY  Water quality problems in middle and lower basin  We already contribute 400,000 – 600,000 AFY
  22. 22. Will A Transbasin Diversion Project be included in Colorado’s Water Plan?
  23. 23. Figures from report “Water and its Relationship to the Economies of the Headwaters Counties,” commissioned by the Northwest Colorado Council of governments.
  24. 24. Roundtable Themes  Local control  Land use - connection with water use  Healthy rivers  Not just flat, but supporting healthy biology  Multi-purpose projects  Existing reservoirs, restricted, better cooperation of review  Why reliance upon stream – vulnerable no redundancy  Save agriculture  No water to support other basins  Protect Mainstem water rights operations  Regional cooperation  Themes change and evolve
  25. 25. Nonconsumptive Needs Assessment (NCNA)  Part of the Statewide Water Supply Initiative (SWSI) 2010  Environmental and recreational mapping – focus areas and projects and methods  Habitat restoration (bank stabilization or instream habitat restoration)  Flow protection [voluntary flow agreements, instream flow (ISF) donations, voluntary re-operation of reservoirs for environmental and recreational benefit]
  26. 26. Nonconsumptive Needs Assessment (NCNA)  Attributes at risk  Water quality/Temperature  Geomorphic function  Riparian/wetlands ecological function  Aquatic ecological function  Recreational boating  #1 Factor affecting attributes - FLOW  Quantification of “at-risk” reaches = 64+
  27. 27. Public Outreach Nonconsumptive  Recovery Program, Conservation Rep. for the Recovery Program Implementation Team  Bureau of Reclamation  Colorado Parks and Wildlife  Denver Water  Bureau of Land Management  United States Forest Service  Nonconsumptive Roundtable Representatives  Trout Unlimited  Consumptive  Water provider interviews  Conservancy Districts  Industry  Agricultural  NRCS Ag Days (January 29)  Rancher/Farmer individual meetings  Colorado River District-Colorado River Water Supply and Demand Study  Misc  AGNC NWCOG  Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs  Colleges  County Commissioners
  28. 28. Upcoming Meetings  Town Hall Meetings  Thursday, April 10, 6-8 p.m., Aspen (Rio Grande Building/Conference Room)  Colorado Basin Roundtable Meetings April 14, 2014, Glenwood Springs Community Center, noon – 4 p.m. April 28, 2014, Glenwood Springs Community Center, noon – 4 p.m.
  29. 29. Have you Checked Out the Website?  http://coloradobip.sgm-inc.com/
  30. 30. Thank You  This is your plan and project….we want to hear from You! You are driving this plan!  Breakout stations  Consumptive  Nonconsumptive (Enviro. and Rec.)  Agriculture  Policy
  31. 31. Grand Valley Principles  Cornerstones of our economy - ag, resource extraction, recreation and tourism  Compact Call  River health and water quality  Climate change  Agricultural heritage  Local control of planning for development and water needs  Ensure that federal agencies operate within existing state water law  Ensure that any future upstream water diversions protect and maintain water quality for downstream users  Implementation of a long term, regional water augmentation program
  32. 32. Grand Valley Principles  Collaborate with Colorado Compact states on long-term regional augmentation  Local water/land use plans/regulatory tools  Limit the practices of “buy and dry” of agricultural lands  Viable storage or enlargement of in-basin water storage projects  Encourage agricultural water conservation - net water savings to be marketed independently  Protect existing state water law /Prior Appropriation Doctrine  Avoid state mandates on local government, water providers and irrigators  Water bank  Promote local cooperation and collaboration  Economic incentives to promote “green” hydro-electric projects  Promote river clean-up projects (e.g., desalinization in Glenwood Springs and Dotsero)  Any inter-basin water project must protect and mitigate basin of origin  Protect the important senior agricultural water rights (i.e. Grand Valley senior irrigation water rights)
  33. 33. Grand Valley Irrigators Statement  Existing Colorado Water Law/Protect Prior Appropriation Doctrine – protect senior water rights  Oppose mandates that adversely impact the flexible, efficient, cost effective, operation of Grand Valley irrigators water rights  Eliminate barriers to efficient, wise & innovative use of ag water  Collaborate with municipal and irrigation entities  Reduce impacts to Grand Valley economy  Market-based to alternative ag water conversions/water banking  Shoshone (SHOP Agreement), Green Mountain, Blue River decrees and additional reservoir storage

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