RETURN FLOWS AT ISSUE IN COALDALE WATER CASE
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED BY ARK VALLEY VOICE
An engineering review of the CB Ranch water rights court case indicates the calculations filed by the Security Water District could be off by as much as a factor of three.
“Our calculations show a few differences from Security’s numbers,” Manera said. “The biggest difference is on return flows. In winter, they’re showing 30-acre-foot returns. We’re showing double to triple that.”
Return flows are the water that returns to the stream system after being used by the water right owner. In this case the CB Ranch diverted water from Hayden Creek to irrigate its alfalfa fields. Water not consumed by the alfalfa either evaporated or ended up in the Arkansas River as return flows
Headed for the finish line
As you know, we’ve been working toward a successful outcome on the CB Ranch since July of 2014. What a journey! Along with San Isabel Land Protection Trust, we’re 100 community members strong (this is amazing!) advocating for the CB ranch through our financial contributions, time, care and ongoing legal efforts.
I’m pleased to share I do believe we are headed for the finish line. But we need your help to get there.
We’ve been busy!
We’ve been working on the details of a final covenant agreement with Security Water District (SWD). This legally binding agreement, which would be in the final water court decree and enforceable by the courts, would obligate SWD to the proper weed and erosion control management, as well as re-seeding of the CB Ranch. (This is the first of its kind for a dry-up in the Upper Arkansas River Basin!) San Isabel would hold the covenant and be responsible for the monitoring of the ranch to ensure the terms of the agreement are being upheld. (This saves our community a tremendous amount of time, money - and of course, they bring a very experienced staff and board members to the effort). San Isabel cannot terminate this agreement before 5-years. Thank you, San Isabel, for your time and the considerable resources you’ve put toward supporting our community and this beautiful land.
The convent is currently being reviewed by Security Water District and their attorneys. Our next status conference will be in April. We should have SWD’s comments on the convent as well as the draft decree by then. If you’d like to see a copy for the draft covenant agreement, do let me know and I can forward that to you.
A challenge - Your donation will be matched $1 for $1
To get us to the finish line, we estimate we need to raise our final $3000. San Isabel Land Protection Trust has graciously announced they will match your donation $1 for $1 up to $1500. Together, we could raise the $3000. What a win for our efforts! Would you please consider making your spring donation to the CB Ranch water court effort today? Our legal fees are incurring and we truly could use your support.
How to donate
Please send your donation to SILPT by April 15. You may donate online: www.SILPT.org or mail to PO Box 124, Westcliffe, CO 81252
PLEASE be sure to indicate your donation is for the CB Ranch otherwise we won’t receive credit for your generosity. Thank you! And thank you again San Isabel for matching our donations $1 for $1.
While I'm no expert on the history of dry-ups in Colorado, I do feel I can confidently say that what the Coaldale community has done and continues to do with coming together for the good stewardship of the CB Ranch now and into the future is unique. It's a powerful thing what a group of passionate, kind, and thoughtful people can do. I'm honored to call Coaldale home.