Vail Daily letter: River crisis
May 26, 2011
Why is it that the state agencies headed by the Division of Natural Resources are allowing trans-mountain diverters to kill the Upper Colorado River?
The Division of Wildlife and many other concerned groups have been pointing out for years that the upper Colorado River from Windy Gap Reservoir downstream to the confluence with the Blue River is Colorado’s most impaired river.
The river has lost the famed Colorado River rainbow trout, sculpin, six varieties of stoneflies, numerous large mayfly species, and the brown trout are decreasing in size and quantity.
What the diverters are offering is purely symptomatic.
There is a simple solution that will help fix the problem: Take Windy Gap Dam off channel.
Windy Gap is a 100-acre, 4.5-foot-deep reservoir that stores what is to be transshipped to the East Slope.
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Only after a bypass is constructed around the reservoir for the Colorado River will other mitigation efforts be helpful in fixing the river.
Our water needs to be a shared resource.
The state agencies need to recommend to the federal agencies which will make the final decisions that there should be no more diversions until they fix the mess they’ve created.