Public meeting set to address future of water resources

By Al Pfister
Special to The SUN
The Upper San Juan Watershed Enhancement Partnership (WEP) is coordinating an effort to identify opportunities to optimize the use of our water resources in the face of a drier and warmer climate.
Rivers and streams provide a bounty of beneficial uses — agricultural, municipal, industrial, recreational and environmental. The WEP’s goal is to promote cooperative efforts to ensure that all uses are met.
The geographic area of focus includes the Upper San Juan River watershed, to include the San Juan, Piedra, Navajo and Chama rivers and their tributaries.
The WEP wants to work with all water users to identify opportunities for cooperative projects that will enhance our ability to use our water resources in recognition of the “prior appropriation doctrine” of water use in Colorado. This is a locally driven effort supported by funding from the Colorado Water Plan.
Over the past few months, the WEP has formed a steering committee comprised of representatives from the agricultural, municipal and industrial, recreational and environmental communities. The committee has developed a proposed framework for moving forward. Goals and objectives have been drafted and are awaiting stakeholder input, involvement and refinement. More details can be found at www.mountainstudies.org/sanjuan/smp.
We want to secure input from the public to make sure our efforts adequately address the concerns of the community. A public meeting will be held with the goal of informing all stakeholders interested in the future of our water resources. The meeting is Jan. 10, 2019, at the CSU Extension Office from 6 to 8 p.m. Light snacks will be provided.
The group is also offering the opportunity to offer input through a survey. You can find it on the website. We hope you can attend and provide your input on this important topic for our community.

This story was posted on January 2, 2019.