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Colorado River Update: We’re Racing Into 2024!

Hi Friends of the Colorado River!

It is your support that keeps us working! Please donate online here:

A few weeks ago, the “National Climate Assessment” came out with a report indicating that the amount of snow falling in the Colorado River basin would decrease by 24% by the year 2050. This amount of decrease will make a huge difference to the management of the river, and we believe that the vast majority of decision-makers are in complete denial about it.

Instead of dramatically reducing the amount of water used and planning for fewer dams, more and more dams are planned to be built while all of the dams in existence are being fortified.

It’s in this political reality that we do our work, constantly arguing to protect and restore the flow of water in the Colorado River and its tributaries, not further dam, drain and destroy it.

As we head into 2024, we are going to start “high-grading” our work, focusing on a few specific fights where we can likely make a difference.

First and foremost, we are engaging in the new long-term Colorado River Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) being prepared by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation. It’s through this process – that will play out over the next 24 months – that the biggest change in the River’s management could occur.

We are going to argue hard that climate change is real, and that fewer dams, not more, are one of the answers to managing the system in a sustainable way. Right now the Bureau is managing the entire system on a month-to-month basis instead of having any eye on future sustainability.

This campaign dovetails with our “Decommission Glen Canyon Dam campaign” and will be a centerpiece of our advocacy throughout. The EIS process is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get the Bureau of Reclamation to consider decommissioning Glen Canyon Dam as an official “alternative” that can be carried forward into future policy as climate change intensifies.

Second, we are going to focus our fights against proposed new dams to a few projects where we think we can make a difference, rather than splattering our work over the entire Southwest U.S. These specific proposed new dams are in our crosshairs to oppose:

  • The White River Storage Project in Rio Blanco County, CO.
  • The West Fork Battle Creek Project in Carbon County, WY.
  • The Whitney Reservoir Project in Eagle County, CO.
  • The “Defend The Fens” dam fights in Summit County, CO.
  • The Gross Dam fight in Boulder County, CO.
  • And maybe 1 or 2 others that rise to the surface.

So instead of fighting all 25 proposed new dams across the Southwest, we’ll focus on a few, but still play a supporting role to other groups who are leading in other watersheds.

Once again, we emphasize that we are a very small, very aggressive river-protection organization, and that it is solely YOUR SUPPORT that keeps us working and fighting to protect the Colorado River!

Please donate online:

Gary Wockner, Director, Save The Colorado

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