Major Eagle River Watershed Council report coming soon |

Major Eagle River Watershed Council report coming soon

Meeting: Eagle County Commissioners, Sept. 13 work session.

Present: Peter Runyon, Sara Fisher, Jon Stavney.

Who they talked to: Representatives of the Eagle River Watershed Council and Eagle County Environmental Health Department Director Ray Merry.

What they talked about: Kirby Winn spent more than 90 minutes talking about the various studies and projects the council has participated in. Here’s a short list of what he talked about:

The council puts together partnerships between agencies including the Eagle River Water and Sanitation District, local governments and the U.S. Geological Survey.

Data from various surveys and studies can be combined to create a more comprehensive look at the health of the Eagle River.

Projects have included tamarisk removal from the riverside, riverbank restoration in Edwards and cleaning out sediment catch basins on Black Gore Creek on Vail Pass.

Pollution from the Eagle Mine upstream from Minturn is much improved, but still presents problems, and potential problems, for river health.

While groundwater quality from wells in the valley is generally good so far, studies have identified places where groundwater might be vulnerable to contamination.

More study is needed to understand why insect populations are lower on Gore Creek through Vail than on the Eagle River itself.

“All this information allows you to answer the question, ‘so what?’.” Merry said.

What’s next? A draft of an update to the Eagle River Watershed Plan is expected in the next 30 days.

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