Board of Directors to Discuss Streamflow Forecasts and Water Projects

The Colorado River District Board of Directors will meet in Glenwood Springs on April 19-20 to discuss Second Quarter priorities and First Quarter accomplishments. This meeting’s agenda is available HERE.

River District Board meetings include updates from staff on a variety of subjects including technical, operational, and outreach efforts, state and federal legislation, as well as grant funding requests.

Hydrology

An update on hydrological forecasts and reservoir operations is a benchmark of every River District board meeting. This quarter, Director of Interstate Matters Dave ‘DK’ Kanzer and Sr. Water Resources Engineer Don Meyer will be presenting a bleak outlook on the upcoming runoff season.

According to Kanzer and Meyer’s report, lower than normal snowpack across the west, coupled with dry soil conditions and a thirsty atmosphere, are once again lowering streamflow throughout the region. Lake Powell’s drop below the target elevation of 3525’ in recent weeks highlights the severity of the basin-wide situation.

Calculating the river runoff from observed snowpack has always been a challenge, but as the Millennial Drought persists, more and more weight is given to atmospheric thirst and soil moisture content in those calculations. After last year’s 89% snowpack melted into a 32% of average inflow into Lake Powell, water managers and Bureau of Reclamation forecasters are working hard to account for the deficits of this ongoing ‘mega-drought.’

Locally, the outlook is similar.

“Many Reservoirs are not expected to fill in 2022 including Dillon, Green Mountain, Granby, Williams Fork, Wolford Mountain, and possibly Ruedi Reservoirs,” Kanzer outlined. “There is a significant cumulative hydrological deficit which continues to grow; it will take multiple years of above average conditions to recover.”

Community Funding Partnership

At the April meeting, the Colorado River District Board of Directors will also receive staff recommendations for funding seven more projects through the Community Funding Partnership.

Amy Moyer, Director of Strategic Partnerships will present the following projects, which continue to represent the District’s commitment to geographic and impact equity within our fifteen counties:

Advancing Irrigation Efficiency Across Summit County
Project Applicant: High Country Conservation Center|
Staff recommends: $76,475
Location: Summit County

Sheriff Reservoir Dam Rehabilitation Final Design
Project Applicant: The Town of Oak Creek
Staff recommends: $80,000
Location: Routt/Rio Blanco County

Somerset Water Treatment Revitalization Projects
Project Applicant: Somerset Domestic Waterworks District
Staff recommends: $91,702
Location: Gunnison County

Grandview Canal UML Headgate and Water Optimization Project
Project Applicant: Grandview Canal & Irrigation Company
Staff recommends: $135,000
Location: Delta County

CDC Upper West Lateral Pipeline and SCADA
Project Applicant: Crawford Clipper Ditch Company
Staff recommends: $150,000
Location: Delta County

Water Tank 3 Interior Rehabilitation Project
Project Applicant: Buffalo Mountain Metropolitan District
Staff recommends: $25,000
Location: Summit County

2022 Yampa River Flow Pilot Project
Project Applicant: Colorado River District Staff on behalf of the Colorado River District’s Enterprise
Staff recommends: $26,250
Location: Moffat County

 

 

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