Colorado Well Permits

The State Publications Library receives many questions about Colorado well permits and water rights. Navigating the state’s water rights system can be complex, but fortunately there is a great deal of information online. A helpful place to start is with the Guide to Colorado Well Permits, Water Rights, and Water Administration, issued by the Colorado […]

Time Machine Tuesday: Students Debate the Boulder Dam

In the fall of 1927, the University of Colorado announced the topic for that year’s High School Debating League, which the university was sponsoring. That school year, high school students from all over Colorado would research and debate the merits of the proposed Boulder Dam (known since 1947 as the Hoover Dam). Construction of a […]

Protect Your Child from Lead Poisoning

Statewide, an average of about 1.9% of children under six have elevated blood lead levels, according to data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). This is a slight rise from previous years. The statewide average dipped to a low of 1.6% in 2015, possibly with the increased awareness from media attention […]

Colorado Water Plan Update

What is the State of Colorado doing to address the future of our water resources? After two years in development, Colorado’s Water Plan was released in 2015. “Our population has ballooned from 1 million in 1930 to over 5 million today, and could nearly double by 2060,” says the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB), who […]

Stream Management Plan Resource Library

The Colorado Water Conservation Board, along with partners at the River Network, have created a helpful website for agencies and individuals to learn about the stream management plan (SMP) process in Colorado. The Stream Management Plan Resource Library includes background information on the stream management plan process, a history of planning efforts, potential funding sources, […]

Time Machine Tuesday: 1984 Floods and Landslides

In May and June of 1984, unseasonably warm temperatures caused that winter’s heavy snowfalls to melt at a rapid pace. As a result, fifteen counties on the Western Slope experienced significant flooding and landslides. Two people died. The damage was so extensive that Governor Lamm renewed his initial disaster declaration over and over again well […]

May is American Wetlands Month

Wetlands and riparian areas are important parts of our ecosystem. They provide for a diverse array of fish and wildlife species and vegetation, provide protection from erosion, help mitigate floods and drought, naturally decompose organic waste, and even help purify the air. According to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), May marks American Wetlands Month, […]

Colorado Hazard Mapping Tools

Flood season has arrived, and the State of Colorado has a number of online tools useful for mapping areas at risk of floods and landslides. Colorado Water Conservation Board The Colorado Hazard Mapping and Risk MAP Portal from the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) provides a variety of tools for assessing hazard risk. In addition […]

Resources on Colorado’s Groundwater

Water is our state’s most important natural resource, and therefore the State of Colorado has published numerous resources on its use. One of the types of water used in Colorado is groundwater, which the Colorado Geological Survey (CGS) defines as “water that occupies the pore spaces or crevices or fractures within soil or rock.” Colorado’s […]

Time Machine Tuesday: Ute Indian Water Rights

This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the federal government’s passage of the Colorado Ute Indian Water Rights Settlement Act of 1988. Three years prior, in 1985, the US government, the State of Colorado, and Colorado’s two Ute tribes began negotiating for water rights for Colorado’s two Ute reservations in the southwest corner of the […]

Time Machine Tuesday: Water and Growth

In 1999 the Colorado Legislative Council published an Issue Brief entitled Finding Water for One Million New Residents. It reported that in 20 years the population of the Northern Front Range – including the counties of Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas, Jefferson, and Larimer – would grow to 3.5 million people, and that one of the […]

Time Machine Tuesday: "Mineral and Water Resources of Colorado," 1968

Fifty years ago Colorado’s two U.S. Senators, Gordon Allott and Peter Dominick, requested the State of Colorado and the U.S. Geological Survey to publish Mineral and Water Resources of Colorado.  “The importance of both of these vital resources to the economic well-being of Colorado cannot be overestimated,” Allott wrote in the report’s foreword.  “I requested […]

What’s In Your Drinking Water?

May 6-12, 2018 is National Drinking Water Week.  From lead to fluoride, from private wells to public water systems, there are many consumer issues related to the water you drink.  If you are interested in learning about Colorado’s drinking water, start with the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment’s Drinking Water: Consumer Information webpage.  […]

Citizen Science

Colorado State University’s Natural Resources Economy Lab (NREL), along with several other partners, has developed CitSci.org, a site where everyday citizens can go to contribute data and scientific research.  Using the site, researchers can create a project, collect data, and view the results.  For instance, one of the site’s projects is a the “Front Range […]

Time Machine Tuesday: The Parshall Flume

Water is a precious resource in Colorado, so its use and conservation have been extensively studied by scientists throughout Colorado history.  One of the best known scientists to study Colorado water was Ralph Parshall, who developed the Parshall Flume. The Parshall Flume is “a device that, when placed in a channel, measures the flow of […]

Time Machine Tuesday: Colorado Water Study 1978

The 1970s were times of major growth in Colorado, and with it came an increased concern over the conservation of natural resources, as evidenced by Colorado voters’ rejection of the 1976 Olympics.  The natural resource that became the State of Colorado’s biggest conservation priority was water, and in 1978 Colorado conducted a major water study, […]

Time Machine Tuesday: The Arkansas River Compact

The Arkansas River Compact is an agreement between the states of Colorado and Kansas to avoid disputes over water usage rights and to “equitably divide and apportion” the waters between the two states.  The agreement, signed in 1948, further specifies the use of the waters in John Martin Reservoir.  You can read a copy of […]

Protecting Colorado's Groundwater

Pesticides and chemicals can have an unhealthy effect on groundwater, so the Colorado Department of Agriculture, Colorado State University, and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment have teamed up “to protect groundwater and the environment from impairment or degredation due to the improper use of agricultural chemicals while allowing their proper and correct […]

Time Machine Tuesday: Public Opinion on Water Quality

This week we’re only going back a decade, to 2007, but a lot has changed in ten years concerning today’s topic. A decade ago, the State of Colorado’s Water Quality Control Division (WQCD) issued a report entitled Public Opinions on Water Quality Issues, which you can read online courtesy of our library.  The report contained […]