Hello Poudre River Lovers! THIS IS IT! Today is Giving Tuesday -- Thank you for your support! Please donate on our website at: http://www.savethepoudre.org/take-action/donate/ In the next few months, we will make our final decisions about challenging the permits for NISP at the local, state, and federal level, and YOUR financial support will make those decisions for us. For 18 years, we’ve been fighting to stop the proposed Northern Integrated Supply Project (NISP) because it would further dam/drain/divert the Poudre River through Fort Collins. Here’s an update on where the battle is right now. First, 2 of 3 Larimer County Commissioners voted to approve NISP, a decision that was finalized in early November 2020. We’ve pulled out all the stops in our effort to reverse this decision. So far, we’ve: Filed a lawsuit arguing that two of the County Commissioners are biased due to their decades of support for NISP. Will be filing another lawsuit against Larimer County specifically for the NISP decision. Worked in close coalition with two local neighborhood groups – “Save Rural NoCo” and “No Pipe Dream” – to fight the project and influence the County’s decision. Continued to make news arguing that NISP should use the river as a conveyance. The Denver Post (above left) highlighted our work to fight both NISP and the Thornton Pipeline on Sunday, Nov. 15th. And, the Fort Collins Coloradoan (right) accurately covered the Larimer County hearing process extensively. The County permit process completely ignored many issues, and completely ignored 95% of all public comment opposing NISP. The outrageous decision to support NISP by two term-limited Commissioners can and must be overturned. We have a strong case in the courts to overturn this decision and we are aggressively pursuing it. We are fighting every step of the way in this County permit debacle. It ain’t over yet! Second, our legal action against the State of Colorado is moving forward with a final decision occurring while this letter goes to press. The state gave a “401 water quality permit” to NISP. Save The Poudre's appeal alleges thirteen violations of State regulations when the State gave its permit. The Top Five violations are: No water rights – the plan to fill Glade Reservoir requires buying hundreds of farms in Weld County, whereas only two farms have been bought. Fails to take into account climate change and its reduction in streamflow in the Poudre River. Mitigation won’t occur until full build-out, maybe 30 years in the future. Mitigation doesn’t allow for peak flows to clean out the river and restore the riparian forest through Fort Collins. Fails to quantify any requirements to meet state water quality standards and relies on nebulous "adaptive management". The State permit was given by the staff at the Water Quality Control Division. The appeal is to the "Water Quality Control Commission" appointed by Governor Polis. If the “Commission” votes against the Poudre River, we can file a lawsuit in Larimer County District Court. Finally, Save The Poudre is awaiting the…
For Immediate Release
June 20, 2019
Contact: Gary Wockner, Save The Poudre, 970-218-8310
SAVE THE POUDRE TRIES TO DEFEND LARIMER COUNTY AGAINST THE CITY OF THORNTON LAWSUIT
Poudre River: This week, Save The Poudre filed a “motion to intervene” (posted here) to defend Larimer County against the lawsuit filed by the City of Thornton. The lawsuit tries to overturn a unanimous decision by the Larimer County Commissioners to “deny” the Thornton Pipeline from diverting Poudre River water upstream of Fort Collins and piping it across the county and down to Thornton.
Save The Poudre believes the organization has a strong right to intervene and is optimistic the court will allow intervention:
- Save The Poudre literally started this issue 10 years ago by reaching out to Thornton.
- Save The Poudre kept in touch with Thornton over the years.
- Save The Poudre originally brought the “Poudre River Option” to the attention of the Douglas Road neighbors (a coalition now called “No Pipedream”).
- Save The Poudre participated in all of the Larimer County hearings and Working Group processes, arguing for the Poudre River Option.
- Thornton discussed the Poudre River Option at length during the County hearings, and also offered the County to put a small part of its water rights back in the Poudre.
- The issue is solely about Poudre River water and whether to run some or all of the Thornton water rights down the Poudre.
“Our organization and our members have a right to be in this case because this case directly impacts our mission to ‘protect and restore the Cache la Poudre River of northern Colorado,’ said Gary Wockner, Director of Save The Poudre.
The City of Thornton has initially “opposed” Save The Poudre’s intervention, but the judge has now given Thornton 30 days to formally respond to Save The Poudre’s full motion.
“It’s completely ridiculous that Thornton opposes our intervention,” said Wockner. “We have every right to defend Larimer County, represent the Poudre River, and represent our members in this lawsuit.”