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Colorado River Update: The Dam Fights Heat Up With the Summer Weather!

Hi Great Friends of the Colorado River!

As summer heats up, so do the dam fights in the Colorado River basin.

There are now TWENTY SIX (26!) proposed new dams/diversions/pipelines in the Colorado River basin, every one of which would take more water out of the river or further obstruct its flow. We keep track of all of them on our website (click here to see them all). Here’s a few updates about the permitting process we are engaging in.

First, the massive proposed Lake Powell Pipeline released its “Draft Environmental Impact Statement” this week. We are locking arms with colleagues in Utah to help fight it. This pipeline is the biggest proposed imminent threat on the Colorado River, and several groups will be engaged in the permitting battle. In the near future, we will ask you to contact the Bureau of Reclamation and submit comments against the pipeline — stay tuned!

Second, proposed projects called “Pumped Storage Hydropower” are popping up like mushrooms in Arizona, with four proposal now in the permitting process. All four of them are private, for-profit schemes where companies hope to make money off of the Colorado River’s water by pumping it out of the river and nearby groundwater during the daytime, and then running water back down to the river through hydroelectric turbines during at night. These projects would not only further dam or divert the river’s flow and its beautiful canyons, they are inefficient wastes of money in a sun-drenched landscape where solar power makes much more sense. We have locked arms with environmental-group colleagues in Arizona to stop them.

Third, the ridiculous plan to build a dam in the Holy Cross Wilderness Area in Colorado, and pump water out of the Eagle River system over to the sprawling Front Range has now started its permitting process. The applicants — Aurora and Colorado Springs — are seeking a “Special Use Permit” from the U.S. Forest Service to drill test holes to help them decide where to put the dam. We are locking arms with colleagues here in Colorado to fight this stupid project.

It never ends!

Last week, our great friends at Wildearth Guardians hosted a ZOOMCAST with us where we discuss all of these bad ideas and more. You can see the recording of the event on our Facebook page by clicking here.

As these projects move through the permitting processes, we’ll be reaching out to ask you to take action.

Stay tuned, and Thank You For Your Support!

You can donate to Save The Colorado online by clicking here.

Gary Wockner, Director, Save The Colorado

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