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For Immediate Release
Sept. 29, 2017
Contact: Gary Wockner, Save The Colorado
Save The Colorado FOIAs To Get “Upper Basin Drought Contingency Plan”
Colorado River, USA: Today, Save The Colorado sent a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the Upper Colorado River Commission (UCRC) seeking a document referred to on its website as the ““Reservoir Drought Contingency Plan Memorandum of Agreement“. Over the past 24 months, Save The Colorado has become aware that drafts of this document have been circulated to various state and federal agencies, but the document has not been available for public review. Further, on July 5, 2017, Save The Colorado contacted the UCRC and asked for the document, but did not receive a reply.
News reports about the “Plan” indicate that it may include draining large amounts of water out of Upper Basin reservoirs, including Blue Mesa, Navajo, Flaming Gorge, and Fontenelle, and running that water down into Lake Powell in order to keep Lake Powell above “power pool” which is the point at which the Glen Canyon Dam hydroelectric facility can function. News reports also indicate that the “Plan” may include leasing or buying very large amounts of water from Upper Basin farmers in Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah, and running that water down into Lake Powell for the same purpose. Such a dramatic change in Colorado River operations is of significant interest to the public, as well as non-profit groups like Save The Colorado, and therefore this “Plan” should be made public.
“We look forward to the Commission complying with our FOIA request, and we look forward to reviewing the Plan which we believe is of significant public interest,” said Gary Wockner, Director of Save The Colorado.