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Colorado River Update: How Will The Colorado River Crisis Affect Wildlife?

Hi Friends of the Colorado River!

As the days shorten, the managers of the Colorado River STILL have not reached any sort of agreement on how to address the crisis of drought, climate change, overuse, and falling lake levels. At the same time, we keep pushing and pushing them to also consider the ecological health of the river as the crisis unfolds.

First, a media outlet has picked up on our concerns and published a piece focusing on the ENVIRONMENT, not just on people and the economy.

The Revelator, which is an independent media site, posted a piece titled, “LEFT OUT TO DRY: Wildlife Threatened by Colorado River Basin Water Crisis”. The piece quotes us heavily right from the beginning,

“The story continues to be about water supply and management, and how to continue to drain the river to support the growth economy,” says Gary Wockner, executive director of Save The Colorado. “There’s been very little discussion about the ecological health, wildlife and habitat.”

“I don’t see environmental protection or ecological health rising to the forefront in any of the discussions,” Wockner says. “I think as the chaos and crisis escalates, the environment is going to continue to be the biggest loser without a voice at the table. Because it’s all about trying to save the economies in the southwest United States that are dependent on the draining of the river.”

We will continue to keep pushing to try and get the ecological health of the river to be a bigger part of the management decisions. You can read The Revelator story here.

Second — GOOD NEWS — our outreach to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) about the proposed “Wolf Creek Dam and Reservoir” in Rio Blanco County, CO, has reaped some rewards. After we testified last week at the regional BLM meeting, they decided to do “more public outreach” before beginning the permitting process for the massive new dam and reservoir.

This is good news because the Rio Blanco Water District is proposing to build a dam 110 feet tall and 3,800 feet long, with water that will be pumped from the White River. The large reservoir would hold 66,720 acre feet of water and have numerous negative impacts on the White River as well as Wolf Creek. You can read the full story in Aspen Journalism here.

As the BLM does more “public outreach”, we will let you all know how to weigh in. Building more dams and diversions in the Colorado River basin is a type of insanity — the system is crashing and new dams would just make the system crash faster.

Thanks again for all of your support! It keeps us working hard.
You can donate online by clicking here.


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