In light of a newly released study that projects a devastating water shortfall in the Colorado River by 2060, Congressman Cory Gardner (R-CO) is renewing his call for increased water storage and announcing related legislation that he plans to introduce next year.
In a letter to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Michael Connor, and Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works Jo Ellen Darcy, Gardner stresses how the current drought has left Colorado reservoirs and rivers well below average. Additionally, as the state's population continues to grow so will its need for more water.
"The Colorado River Basin Study highlights that demand will outpace supply in the near future, making it imperative we start construction on new water storage infrastructure immediately," Gardner wrote. "There are many projects far along in planning and permitting stages, including projects like the Northern Integrated Supply Project (NISP) in Colorado, that are simply waiting for approval. Many, like NISP, are locally funded as well. These projects would mean hundreds of thousands of acrefeet of new storage, providing a benefit to municipalities, industries and agriculture."
Also in the letter, Gardner announced his plan to introduce legislation in the 113th Congress to advance new surface water storage projects. He hopes to work with the Department of Interior, Bureau of Reclamation, and Army Corps of Engineers in order to achieve that goal.
Congressman Gardner is a member in the U.S. House of Representatives serving Colorado's 4th Congressional District. He sits on the Energy and Commerce Committee and is a member of the following Subcommittees: Communications and Technology, Energy and Power, and Oversight and Investigations.