ENVIRONMENT http://kvnf.org en Water Managers Discuss Drought And The Colorado River http://kvnf.org/post/water-managers-discuss-drought-and-colorado-river <img class="wysiwyg-asset-image-wrapper wide" data-caption="The Colorado River fills Lake Powell and Lake Mead. A discussion about drought and the Colorado River took place at a conference in Snowmass Village last week." data-attribution="Credit Colorado River Water Conservation District" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://mediad.publicbroadcasting.net/p/kajx/files/styles/placed_wide/public/201408/Lake_Powell_low_400.jpg" alt="" /><p>NOTE: <em>In the on-air version of this story we incorrectly stated the date of a U.S. Bureau of Reclamation announcement about Colorado River cut-backs to lower basin states. That announcement happened in 2013, not this year. (8/26/14)</em><p>The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation <a href="http://Earlier this month, the U-S Bureau of Reclamation announced it’s cutting back the amount of Colorado River water it sends to states like Nevada and Arizona. The reductions are due to drought and historically low water levels in Utah’s Lake Powell. The river is a lifeline for millions of people...and last week, water officials gathered in Snowmass Village to discuss a dire situation. APR’s MK reports. (SOQ...4:07) The Colorado River starts in Rocky Mountain National Park and runs through our backyard...flowing through Glenwood Canyon...and west along Interstate 70. The River supplies water to 40 million people, irrigates crucial farmland, feeds the recreation economy and aids endangered fish. To say it’s an important resource is an understatement. As cities grow and climate change continues, water managers are nervous. In the middle of a drought in 2012, they began to lay out a contingency plan. John McClow is President of the Colorado Water Congress. He says the idea was to come up with solutions in case the drought continued. john mcclow cut 1 “Well it didn’t, as you know. But, we still feel like the potential is there and we need to have that plan in hand in order to be prepared should it occur. Because the results are catastrophic.” :12 McClow joined others from the seven Colorado River basin states on Wednesday in Snowmass Village...to discuss how to respond to extreme drought. One state that depends on the river is Arizona. Tom McCann manages the Central Arizona Project that provides water to 5 million people. He says his organization could lose one-fifth of its supply by 2017. tom mccann cut 1 “So what have we been doing to prepare for this coming shortage and the issues that we see on the river. One of the things we’ve done for some time now is to invest in sys tem conservation and efficiency type projects.” :14 His group is spending millions to conserve water. They’re also storing the resource underground and funding weather modification programs - like cloud seeding - in upper basin states, such as Colorado and Wyoming. Still, there’s a problem, McCann says. The lower basin states, like Arizona, use more water than they get from Lake Mead…so they depend on “equalization releases” from Lake Powell. Lake Powell supplies the upper basin with water. tom mccann cut 2 “All of us in the lower basin and the basin in general, share the same risk. It’s the risk of Lake Powell going down creates risk of Lake Mead going down. The two reservoirs are operated together. We all live and die together as a basin.” :14 The two huge reservoirs are strikingly low due to a drought that’s gripped the southwest and much of the west. eric millis cut 1 “Are we headed for trouble? Maybe we are, maybe we aren’t.” :04 Eric Millis is from Utah, one of the upper basin states. He’s with the Utah Department of Natural Resources and his primary concern is that drought will bring Lake Powell down to critical levels. His state is expanding weather modification projects, looking to draw more water from upper basin reservoirs and increasing water conservation efforts. The current drought may be hitting California the hardest. Emergency crews have responded to more than 4-thousand wildfires and 400-thousand acres of farmland have gone unfarmed due to drought. Water is so precious, there’s a 500-dollar fine for wasting or misusing it. And to make matters worse… tanya trujillo cut 1 “We’ve also been experiencing above-normal temperatures.” :03 Tanya Trujillo is with the Colorado River Board of California. tanya trujillo cut 2 “...which is really increasing the challenges of trying to keep the water resources down. The hotter it is, the more water that tends to be applied, especially in outdoor situations.” :14 She says the Colorado River is the “good news” story for California this year...because a full supply...partly from a good Colorado snowpack...helped fill a gap from dry California reservoirs. The state has historically used water other lower basin states didn’t need...but, that’s changing. Now states like Arizona are growing and need their full share. So, California’s investing in efficiency projects and fallowing farmland in order to transfer that water to cities. With drought planning, she says California has partnered with other basin states to store water and reduce water loss. Trujillo hopes to build off of such programs as the drought contingency planning continues.">announced this month</a>&#160;water releases from Lake Powell to Lake Mead will increase next year, after historically low releases in 2014. Lake Mead has reached record low levels this summer. The Colorado River supplies these large reservoirs. At a water conference in Snowmass&#160;Village last week, drought and the Colorado River were discussed.&#160;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Aspen Public Radio's Marci </span>Krivonen<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> reports.</span><p> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 19:46:53 +0000 Marci Krivonen 30837 at http://kvnf.org Water Managers Discuss Drought And The Colorado River Wild Neighbors: Black Bears http://kvnf.org/post/wild-neighbors-black-bears <p>KVNF takes a looks at the recent increase of bear sightings in local towns and neighborhoods.&nbsp; Find out how you can prevent bears from visiting and how to handle a bear that keeps coming back.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>Ali Lightfoot hosts this episode of "Wild Neighbors" with guests:</p> Wed, 27 Aug 2014 23:12:43 +0000 Ali Lightfoot 30760 at http://kvnf.org Wild Neighbors: Black Bears Scientist Presents Findings On Collbran Landslide http://kvnf.org/post/scientist-presents-findings-collbran-landslide <p>A new study will be presented at a summit of the Geological Society of America about the Collbran landslide.&nbsp; KVNF’s Jake Ryan talked with the study’s author about what made this slide so different.</p><p></p><p></p><p>The landslide happened three months ago.&nbsp; Jeff Coe is a geologist with the US Geological Survey, and he’s been working with a few other groups to monitor the slide since then.&nbsp; A abstract of their findings can be seen <a href="https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2014AM/webprogram/Paper244963.html">here</a>.&nbsp;</p> Wed, 27 Aug 2014 23:08:33 +0000 Jake Ryan 30759 at http://kvnf.org Scientist Presents Findings On Collbran Landslide There's A Big Leak In America's Water Tower http://kvnf.org/post/theres-big-leak-americas-water-tower The northern arm of the Rocky Mountains is sometimes called "the crown of the continent," and its jewels are glaciers and snowfields that irrigate large parts of North America during spring thaw.<p>But the region is getting warmer, even faster than the rest of the world. Scientists now say warming is scrambling the complex relationship between water and nature and could threaten some species with extinction as well as bring hardship to ranchers and farmers already suffering from prolonged drought.<p>To see how this vast natural irrigation system works, it's best to fly over it. Wed, 27 Aug 2014 19:53:00 +0000 Christopher Joyce 30740 at http://kvnf.org There's A Big Leak In America's Water Tower Colorado Looks to Advanced Technology for Battling Wildfires http://kvnf.org/post/colorado-looks-advanced-technology-battling-wildfires <img class="wysiwyg-asset-image-wrapper wide" data-caption="An example of thermal imaging from the 2008 Freeway Fire near the City of Yorba Linda in southern California" data-attribution="Credit Phil Riggan" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://mediad.publicbroadcasting.net/p/krcc/files/styles/placed_wide/public/201408/Freeway_p567_color_mosaic_re.jpg" alt="" /><p>Colorado’s legislature this year created the state’s own air fleet for fighting wildfires. Wed, 27 Aug 2014 17:14:55 +0000 Andrea Chalfin 30735 at http://kvnf.org Colorado Looks to Advanced Technology for Battling Wildfires What Exactly Is That Birdlike Thing? http://kvnf.org/post/what-exactly-birdlike-thing For years I was convinced that there exists among us a strange, unidentified species of animal — something between bug and bird — jetting around gardens and flowers and trees.<p>Not too long ago one of these natural UFOs buzzed past me in broad daylight. Too big to be a bee, too itty-bitty to be a bird. Slow enough to glimpse, but too fast to identify.<p>Not exactly a hummingbird ...<p>Nor a bumblebee ...<p>What the heck was it?<p>The mystery was finally solved when a friend told me about ...<p>... the hummingbird moth.<p>It's a rare thing: An insect ... that acts like a bird. Tue, 19 Aug 2014 15:32:00 +0000 Linton Weeks 30400 at http://kvnf.org What Exactly Is That Birdlike Thing? Hunting and Fishing Gains Popularity With Women In Colorado, Nationwide http://kvnf.org/post/hunting-and-fishing-gains-popularity-women-colorado-nationwide <p></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Hunting and fishing are male dominated sports, but the number of women participating in these activities is on the rise.&nbsp;</span></p><p> Thu, 14 Aug 2014 21:30:44 +0000 Laura Palmisano 30221 at http://kvnf.org Hunting and Fishing Gains Popularity With Women In Colorado, Nationwide There's No Longer A Doubt About This Cutthroat Trout http://kvnf.org/post/theres-no-longer-doubt-about-cutthroat-trout It's been a cutthroat existence for Colorado's state fish.<p>The rare <a href="http://cpw.state.co.us/learn/Pages/ResearchGreenbackCutthroatTrout.aspx">greenback cutthroat trout</a>, for years on the receiving end of a well-meaning, but taxonomically misguided attempt to save it, now seems to be back on track (though not out of the woods).<p>Two years ago, wildlife biologists confirmed through genetic testing that for decades they'd been restocking Colorado's lakes and streams with the wrong fish, reports Stephanie Paige Ogburn of <a href="http://www.kunc.org/post/colorado-wildlife-officials-r Thu, 14 Aug 2014 17:56:00 +0000 Scott Neuman 30212 at http://kvnf.org There's No Longer A Doubt About This Cutthroat Trout New Mexico's Northern Landscape Gets A New Burst Of Color http://kvnf.org/post/new-mexicos-northern-landscape-gets-new-burst-color Much of the American West is suffering from extreme drought this year. California is running out of water and wildfires have raged through Washington, Oregon and Idaho. But there is a bright spot out West — or, rather, a green spot. In New Mexico, unusually heavy late-summer rains have transformed the landscape.<p>It's a remarkable sight. Sat, 09 Aug 2014 08:53:00 +0000 John Burnett 29974 at http://kvnf.org New Mexico's Northern Landscape Gets A New Burst Of Color Pika Populations Doing Well In Colorado High Country, Wildlife Officials Say http://kvnf.org/post/pika-populations-doing-well-colorado-high-country-wildlife-officials-say <p></p> Thu, 07 Aug 2014 22:10:55 +0000 Laura Palmisano 29915 at http://kvnf.org Pika Populations Doing Well In Colorado High Country, Wildlife Officials Say