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Exciting Changes at the Water Trust

Welcome to a new Water Trust: re-engaged with the communities we work in and more impactful across the board. We are the pre-eminent environmental water transactions expert in Colorado, committed to a future where water is used efficiently and shared with low transactional cost or friction, allowing rivers and streams to flow more strongly. It is a future that climate change has forced our state to embrace, and we will lead the way.

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A special announcement from Colorado Water Trust

Anne Castle, who has served as the Colorado Water Trust Board President since 2020, has been appointed by President Biden to serve as the Federal Commissioner of the Upper Colorado River Commission. The work ahead will demand her full attention and energy, and, as such, she will resign as President of the Colorado Water Trust Board.

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Water trust, ranch partner to bolster Crystal River

This time around, hopes are high that the project will help maintain a healthy river flow. Cold Mountain Ranch owner Bill Fales said on Thursday that he thinks the project is a positive step forward and he’s looking forward to helping keep the river flows up, because no one likes to see it dry.

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Yampa River opens to fishing in downtown Steamboat, again

The river conditions were improved by rain, but will likely maintain thanks to a collaborative effort between CPW, Colorado Division of Water Resources, Colorado Water Trust, Catamount Metro Water District, Upper Yampa Water Conservancy District and the City of Steamboat Springs, in which the agencies finalized a water release plan out of Stagecoach Reservoir.

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Colorado Water Trust and Cold Mountain Ranch Partner to Bolster Flows in Crystal River

Cold Mountain Ranch, with compensation from Colorado Water Trust, is boosting streamflows in the Crystal River, which is suffering from low flows during this hot and dry summer. This is the first year of implementation in a second pilot program with Colorado Water Trust and Cold Mountain Ranch to add flow to the River during dry years.

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Aspen Adjusts City Water Use to Boost Roaring Fork River Flows

On September 7th, 2022, the City of Aspen reduced diversions from the Roaring Fork River at the Wheeler Ditch to support healthier river flows. This allows more water to flow downstream through Aspen, bolstering low flows in the Roaring Fork. This project is part of a ten-year agreement between the City and Colorado Water Trust and continues a years-long effort to support the health of the Roaring Fork during dry periods.

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Carbondale ranch, water trust launch 2nd effort to boost Crystal River flows

In July, Cold Mountain Ranch and the Colorado Water Trust penned an agreement they hope will improve the Crystal River’s streamflow in dry years. The contract compensates the Ranch owners, Bill Fales and Marj Perry, for adjusting the timing of their water diversions when late summer flows dip.

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As Drought Hits Farms, Investors Lay Claim to Colorado Water

Meanwhile nonprofits, some backed by the Walton family, are forging flexible water sharing agreements with producers aiming to replenish rivers. Such “market-based environmentalism” is a way to preserve agriculture, ecosystems, and municipal economies rooted in water-based recreation as climate change intensifies, said Andy Schultheiss, executive director of the Colorado Water Trust.

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Releases from Stagecoach to Yampa River become more important as climate warms

But on July 22, the Upper Yampa Water Conservancy District released reservoir water to bolster the river’s outflow — part of a 10-year deal for water releases with the nonprofit Colorado Water Trust meant to protect the health of the river.

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From the Field: Willow Creek Update

Our project on Willow Creek was the first use of a Water Conservation Program created under Senate Bill 13-19. It conserves flows and protects the fishery in Willow Creek and the Colorado River by ceasing diversions at two irrigation ditches during certain low flow conditions.

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