Headwaters Summer 2014: Flooded and Coming Back Stronger

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Read about the September 2013 flooding in northeastern Colorado, short and longer-term flood protection, a stronger rebuild after a flood event, planning and risk.

Transcript of Headwaters Summer 2014: Flooded and Coming Back Stronger

  • H e a d w a t e r s | S u m m e r 2 0 1 4 1


    FloodedAnd Coming Back Smarter

    Recovering From September 2013

    Mapping Floodplains: An Evaluation of Risk

    Experts Say, Get Ready For More Big Floods.

    Water = Extreme

  • C o l o r a d o F o u n d a t i o n f o r W a t e r E d u c a t i o n | y o u r w a t e r c o l o r a d o . o r g


    New Citizens Guide Coming SoonAn all-new Citizens Guide on Colorados transbasin diversions is in the making! CFWE is proud to add a new desk reference to its popular Citizens Guide series. This guide will explore Colo-rados many transbasin diversions and the historical figures, settings and evolving negotiations that brought them about. Plus it will examine current water planning conversations in Colorado regarding the possibility of new transbasin diversions. Preorder your copy to ensure earliest de-livery and discounted pricing by calling 303-377-4433, or order online at yourwatercolorado.org!

    H e a d w a t e r s | S u m m e r 2 0 1 4 1

    CFWE Mission in Motion


    Get On The CFWE Tour BusAll aboard! In June 2014, CFWEs Yampa River Basin Tour led more than 50 policy makers and water gurus through the wild wonders of northwestern Colorado. Participants heard from expert speakers at exclusive sites about the relationships between ecological health, river access, thriv-ing communities, agriculture and industry. Have you bought a ticket on CFWEs water bus? We invite you to hop on one of our interactive tours to investigate the many values associated with water resources:

    September 2014Explore the power, legacy, benefits and impacts of transbasin diversions in the headwaters of the Gunnison, Arkansas and Colorado rivers.

    Winter 2014Get a taste of the beverage industrys use of water along the Front Range.March 2015Learn how climate science and water resources are connected at the Na-tional Ice Core Laboratory in Lakewood. May 2015Pedal along on a CFWE bike tour to investigate a waterways relationship to urban development, environmental health and community stewardship.

    June 2015Discover the subtle beauty and agricultural abundance of the lower Arkansas River on our annual river basin tour.

    Many thanks to our Yampa Basin Tour sponsors: AMCi Wireless; City of Steamboat Springs; Colorado River District; Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, Inc.; Mount Wer-ner Water District; The Nature Conservancy; and Upper Yampa Water Conservancy District.

    Participants on CFWEs two-day Yampa Basin Tour in June 2014 enjoyed an evening reception at Carpenter Ranch east of Hayden.

    Save The Date!

    2014 Sustaining Colorado Watersheds Conference

    Come Hell or High Water!

    October 7-9, 2014 in Avon, CO

    Join us for the years best

    conference on Colorado water!

    Sponsorships keep conference fees low! Details at www.coloradowater.org/conferences

    Our goal is to expand cooperation in natural resource conservation,

    protection and enhancement by informing participants about new

    issues, innovative projects and through invaluable networking!

    This year's conference will explore the spirit of community resiliency in the

    wake of the 2013 floods, wildfires, and other risks to our watersheds.




    The spillway at Granby Reservoir, a feature of the Colorado-Big Thompson Projects collection system

  • 2 C o l o r a d o F o u n d a t i o n f o r W a t e r E d u c a t i o n | y o u r w a t e r c o l o r a d o . o r g

    CFWE Mission in Motion


    Welcome 2014 Water LeadersCFWE is proud to congratulate its 2014 Water Leaders class! These diverse and talented mid-level water professionals have begun a journey to develop their leadership potential and benefit from extensive self-assessment and networking opportunities with similarly accomplished colleagues. The first training in March 2014 focused on self-awareness and functional team building. The group also examined how regional leaders have effectively built water teams in northeastern Colorado through guest presentations and excursions at the Poudre Learning Center in Greeley. Subsequent trainings will be held in Fraser, Pueblo and Denver. Join us in welcoming these emerging water leaders to your community:

    Jason Carey River RestorationAdam Cwiklin Town of FraserAaron Derwingson The Nature ConservancyJulia Galucci Colorado Springs UtilitiesJames Henderson 711 RanchDawn Jewell City of AuroraLaurna Kaatz Denver WaterAimee Konowal CDPHE Water Quality Control Division

    Steve Malers Open Water FoundationMaria Pastore Grand River ConsultingKlint Reedy Black & Veatch CorporationGigi Richard Colorado Mesa UniversityJennifer Shanahan City of Fort CollinsEnrique Triana MWH AmericasJames VanShaar U.S. Bureau of Reclamation

    The 2014 Water Leaders class visited Grand County during its second training session in May 2014.


    Water Educator NetworkCalling all water educators! CFWEs Water Edu-cator Network aims to help build your capac-ity for providing high-quality water education in your community. Strong and effective programs have the potential to grow the knowledge, change the attitudes and increase the involve-ment of tens of thousands of Colorado youth and adults annually. CFWE believes this leads to a more active and involved citizenry that ad-vocates for balanced, sustainable solutions. Our new network will offer timely communication, professional networking events, a customized water education resource directory, and techni-cal assistance with our team of experts.

    Visit the Water Educator Network website at www.yourwatercolorado.org/water-educator-network to learn how you can sign up for best practices in water education and help increase our collective impact. Memberships are only $100 to $125 per year. Network members ben-efit from priority access to trainings and infor-mation, such as 2014 summer training topics on water festivals, working with formal educa-tion, program evaluation and more!

    Thank you to our network supporters:

    CFWEs Kristin Maharg and Colorado Springs Utilities water educator Birgit Landin on the 2014 Climate and Colorados Water Future Workshop. This annual tour features an after-noon dedicated to providing resources to water educators. Now, the new Water Educator Network creates more learn-ing opportunities with regular webinars, events, a newsletter, resources and more.

  • H e a d w a t e r s | S u m m e r 2 0 1 4 3

    Summer is here, which in the world of water education means field trip time! Ive spent the past seven summers planning and executing dozens of trips to connect Coloradans with their water resources. Ive seen the impact of this work firsthand as an organizer, but its not often I get to reverse the role and participate as an attendee.Thanks to Friends of the Yampa, I spent four days in June floating the Yampa River through Dino-

    saur National Monument with 25 river conservation advocates, ecologists and water professionals. The gratitude I feel for the organizers time, knowledge and financial commitment is a great reminder of why I, myself, spend summers doing this work. Educational events require a large commitment of resources. But at the end of the day, an outdoor classroom experience cannot be replaced by webinars, blogs or print materials; its an essential educational tool in many contexts.

    One of the topics we discussed around the campfire after riding the waves of a huge spring runoff was how to better connect people to their environment. My opinion was that Colorado needs to invest in water education to a degree not yet realized. Today, most local water education programs are carried out by vol-unteers or part-time staff persons. But water education is a long-term effort requiring dedicated resources that are difficult to sustain in volunteer or part-time contexts.

    The importance of water education to our states water future is clear and often cited. Numerous local, state and national reports on the path forward identify educating the general public and specific interest groups as a critical need. But the resources currently dedicated to water education pale in comparison to what is required. At CFWE, for example, our educational tours sell out weeks in advance, leaving dozens of people on waiting lists. The problem isnt interestits capacity to meet that interest.

    Given the clear need, why hasnt that investment happened? Ive lately seen an attitude about water education that, at best, views it as unmeasurable and without definable results and, at worst, as an un-necessary junket. This obviously troubles me, as I see the results of good water education and can easily attest that it is making a difference in our state and local communities.

    Good water education increases awareness of the severity and complexity of water issues, creating concern and the desire to get involved.

    Good water education broadens perspectives and helps us walk a mile in anothers shoes, develop-ing compassion for other viewpoints and a willingness to explore rather than disengage in the midst of disagreement.

    Good water education widens the number of people invested in our water and river systems, producing collaborative solutions that meet multiple needs.

    Good water education promotes uncommon alliances by connecting people around common interests instead of dividing them with their differences.

    CFWE will be doing its part through the new Water Educator Network. We aim to build the capacity of local water educators and increase the amount, quality and effectiveness of water education in Colorado. CFWE wil