The San Luis Valley is once again the target of a water export proposal which threatens our communities and way of life.
Water Connects the San Luis Valley
Our economy, culture and community are connected to agriculture. The some 1,600 farms and ranches in the Valley are the region's economic engine. With less than 7" of precipitation annually, the Valley's crops require irrigation to grow.
Exporting water out of the basin to the Front Range would mean less water for irrigated agriculture. A plan being proposed by Renewable Water Resources will remove water from the Valley and permanently dry up at least 10,000 acres of farmland. It could also negatively impact the environment, including streams, rivers, The Great Sand Dunes National Park, refuges, wetlands, fish and wildlife. Water sustains our economy and lifestyle.
There is no water available to move outside the San Luis Valley. Please join the coalition to protect our water.
UPDATE: RWR Approaches Douglas County to Fund Water Export
Renewable Water Resources has submitted a proposal to Douglas County requesting $20 million in American Rescue Plan Act (COVID relief) funds to advance its plan to export agricultural water from the San Luis Valley. The Douglas County commissioners stated in a story by the Alamosa Citizen (which also ran in the Colorado Sun and Douglas County newspapers) that they will consider the funding proposals in January 2022.
It’s unconscionable to suggest using federal COVID relief money be used to advance a trans-basin water project that is so detrimental to another part of the state. The team RWR has assembled includes former politicians, lobbyists, real estate and private equity investors who stand to make a lot of money.
We are organizing to fight this proposal.
Story Map - Coming Together Around Water
View American River's Story Map for an interactive and in-depth introduction to the people and way of life of San Luis Valley, and the Valley's deep and enduring roots to the water of the Rio Grande.
Through Line - San Luis Valley & the Rio Grande River
“Everything we do revolves around it. The river is the community. It makes us whole. It completes us.”
–Doug Messick, 4th generation San Luis Valley farmer