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PRESS RELEASE: River Destruction On Tap At The Colorado Legislature?

For Immediate Release
April 13, 2017
Contact: Gary Wockner, Save The Poudre and Save The Colorado, 970-218-8310


Denver: Two late bills have been introduced into the Colorado State Legislature that would make it easier to drain and destroy rivers across the state. Both bills are tied to the “Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District” (Northern Water) which is trying to dam and further drain both the Cache la
Poudre River and the Colorado River. These two bills join a third bill that was introduced at the beginning of the session designed to subsidize a massive river-destruction project on the Colorado River also proposed by Northern Water. The three bills are:

  1. HB17-1248, which proposes to give a $90 million low-interest loan for Northern Water’s “Windy Gap Firming Project” which would drain another 10 billion gallons of water/year out of the Colorado River in Grand County and pipe it over the northern Front Range.
  2. SB 282, which we have nicknamed the “Poudre River Destruction Bill,” which would make it easier for Northern Water to build the massive and extremely controversial Northern Integrated Supply Project on the Poudre River, thereby draining a new 12 billion gallons of water/year out of the Poudre.
  3. HB17-1291, which would overturn a recent Colorado Supreme Court case about where water diverters can store water in Colorado, thereby making it easier to dam, drain, divert, and destroy rivers by increasing the “flexibility” of storage options.

“River destruction appears to be on tap at the Colorado legislature this year,” said Gary Wockner, director of Save The Poudre and Save The Colorado. “Sixty percent of the Poudre River is already drained out, and 70% of the Colorado River is already drained out, but Northern Water won’t be happy until they change state law to try and further destroy these imperiled rivers.”

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