Colorado Water Toolkit: Live Like You Love It! — Colorado WaterWise

October 23, 2014

ColoW LLYLI Release final

Tomorrow at the Colorado WaterWise Water Conservation Summit, Colorado WaterWise will launch an educational water toolkit to raise awareness about the value of water in Colorado. Colorado Water: Live Like You Love It, provides communication tools and resources for water stakeholders to help communicate the importance of water, focusing on conserving water, caring about water quality and committing to learn about this critical resource.

Six water and environmental organizations sponsored the development of the toolkit including Loveland Water and Power, The City of Greeley Water Conservation Program, Colorado Springs Utilities, Northern Water, One World One Water and Western Resource Advocates. Colorado WaterWise initiated the toolkit when research revealed the need to educate the public, particularly young adults about how we get our water, the scarcity of the resource and the importance to care for water quality.

As a headwaters state, Colorado water is the topic of great discussion as 18 states plus Colorado depend on it. With the Colorado population alone expected to double by 2050, the need to Live Like You Love It is more important than ever. By utilizing the professionally created tools available in the toolkit, water organizations and other interested stakeholders can easily spread the word about protecting this finite resource, doing our part to conserve and committing to learning about water issues. The toolkit includes tips, videos, fact sheets and a communications plan to help Colorado to Live Like You Love It. An organization must be a member of Colorado WaterWise at the $300 level and agree to terms of use to use the materials.

“With the state of Colorado embarking upon creating its first water plan, we believe on of the findings will undoubtedly be that there is a need for more education in our state about the value of our water,” said Alyssa Quinn, the Colorado WaterWise committee chair. “This toolkit provides stakeholders with materials and messaging to educate the public, particularly the millennial age group, about the value of water. Customers in that age group are going to be the generation making key and sometimes tough decisions about our water. They need to be informed.”

To join the movement and Live Like You Love It, Like Love Colorado Water on Facebook or follow it on Twitter at @LoveCOWater. To find out more about the toolkit, visit Colorado WaterWise at http://coloradowaterwise.org.


AG Suthers opposes EPA “Waters of the US” clarification

October 23, 2014

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From The Durango Herald (Peter Marcus):

“Contrary to their claims, the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers’ proposed revisions to the definition of ‘Waters of the United States’ poses a significant threat to state sovereignty and an economic threat to businesses and local governments in Colorado,” Suthers said. “I join with the multitudes of other interested parties in asking the federal government to abandon this proposed rule.”

The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed a rule that would clarify regulatory authority over streams and wetlands. Two U.S. Supreme Court decisions have clouded the agency’s regulatory powers, and so environmental officials are seeking to secure their authority.

The joint rule-making with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers comes as polluters have escaped fines for violations because the EPA has been uncertain that its authority would hold up in court.

But some see the rule as an overreach by the federal government. They worry that the proposal would give federal regulators broad authority over small bodies of water on private property, including puddles, despite EPA assurances that would not be the case.

Suthers worries that an expansion of EPA jurisdiction over waters in Colorado could have economic impacts for farmers, water providers, small businesses and local governments because of the expense of complying with the increased regulation.

He also suggested that the proposed rule infringes on the states’ authority to protect and manage water resources.

“The extension of Clean Water Act jurisdiction to include water with a significant nexus to navigable waters will certainly result in added regulation over actions that have not previously been subjected to regulation,” Suthers wrote in his letter to the EPA. “The economic impacts of such a jurisdictional expansion will be very significant for those impacted.

“Under the Clean Water Act, Congress preserves the states’ traditional authority to regulate and manage the development and use of land and water resources,” he said.

Not all farmers, however, agree with the attorney general’s position. Smaller family farmers have been supportive of the proposal, including the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union.

The organization launched a “They Don’t Speak for Me” campaign to demonstrate its support for the recommendation, suggesting that clean water is key to a farmer’s success.

With an abundance of farms and ranches in Southwest Colorado, the issue hits close to home.

“It sounds to me like it’s the same rhetoric as everybody else that opposes the rule,” Bill Midcap, director of external affairs for the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, said of Suthers’ statement. “We really think this rule is vital for the success of our nation’s farmers, energy development and the health of our communities.”

Midcap disagreed with Suthers’ position on water rights and sovereignty, adding, “the Clean Water Act had nothing to do with water rights. It’s all about the quality of our water.”

But U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Cortez, said the rule is a direct assault on water rights. He has been at odds with the EPA over the proposed rule for months.

“It is an expansion of the EPA’s regulatory scope without any authority to do so, that disregards state law and privately held water rights,” Tipton said. “This proposed rule could have devastating impacts on water users across Colorado and the nation and restrict their ability to access or put to use their privately held water rights.”

More Environmental Protection Agency coverage here.


Climate: Record global warmth in September 2014

October 22, 2014

Originally posted on Summit County Citizens Voice:

Year to-date tied as warmest on record

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Warm, warmer, warmest.

Staff Report

FRISCO — This year is on pace to become the warmest on record, as the National Climatic Data Center reported today that September’s average global temperature hit a new all-time high. Three of the last four months have been record-warm. Visit the NCDC site for the full report.

Once again, warm ocean temperatures prevailed during the month, reaching 1.19 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average, the warmest reading for any month of any year on record, dating back to 1880.

View original 201 more words


CFWE: Transbasin Diversion Webinar Series November 12, December 10, January 14

October 22, 2014

Colorado transmountain diversions via the State Engineer's office

Colorado transmountain diversions via the State Engineer’s office


From email from the CFWE:

The Colorado Foundation for Water Education and Colorado Water Congress are working together to bring you a series of webinars focusing on Transbasin Diversions in Colorado. The webinars will include a diverse range of panelists and presenters to expand upon CFWE’s newest Citizen’s Guide to Colorado’s Transbasin Diversions and coming blog series. Stay tuned for speaker information and details.

Click here to register.

More Colorado Foundation for Water Education coverage here.


#ColoradoRiver District 2014 Water Seminar videos available

October 22, 2014


Colorado Springs Utilities named “WaterSense Partner of Year” — Monica Mendoza

October 22, 2014

From The Colorado Springs Gazette (Monica Mendoza):

Colorado Springs Utilities is the winner of the 2014 “WaterSense Partner of the Year” award. The team celebrated Wednesday at the Colorado Springs Utilities Board meeting.

The award comes from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which publicly recognized Utilities was honored in Las Vegas at the WaterSmart Innovations Conference.

Utilities was presented the award for its “commitment to water efficiency and efforts to educate Americans about WaterSense during 2013.”

By producing and promoting WaterSense labeled products, new homes and programs, WaterSense partners helped Americans save 271 billion gallons of water in 2013 alone —enough water to supply all U.S. homes for 26 days, Utilities officials said. More than 1,500 utility, manufacturer, retail, builder and organizational partners participated.

Colorado Springs Utilities was honored as a 2014 WaterSense Partner of the Year for helping low-income and non-profit housing providers improve efficiency with WaterSense retrofits, supporting apartment owners and managers in property upgrades, helping builders incorporate WaterSense Home certification and educating customers through events, classes, and its WaterSense product demonstration at its Conservation and Environmental Center.

“WaterSense is a crucial venue to discuss conservation and performance,” said Ann Seymour, Utilities water conservation manager. “By leveraging the WaterSense program, we can reach our conservation goals, as well as help customers save water, energy, and money. It’s a true example of win-win.”


EPA Region 8 calls for comments from water managers in West’s arid climate on “Waters of the US”

October 22, 2014


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