Fresh Water Resources
Clean water is one of the most precious resources on Earth and now it is one of the most sought after. Colorado is no exception, despite the fact that our state is the headwaters for four major river systems – the Colorado, Rio Grande, Arkansas, and the Platte. The reality is that someone owns the use for every drop of surface water in Colorado, most of which comes from snow melt. The other fresh water source in our state are aquifers also known as groundwater, all of which are rechargeable in Colorado but not all aquifers are rechargeable. Ground water is different in that it is publicly owned and the state leases the right to lease the use of specific amounts to farmers, ranchers, and metropolitan areas based on how much land they are going to use it on or for how many people served, or the type of industry.
Read Chapter 10 in your eText and then do web research to acquaint yourself with general information about freshwater use in Colorado such as how much is used for different needs, what the law of first use/priority is, . (If you reside in another state, then you may research the water issues in your home state and post them here.)
There are two highly contentious freshwater issues in Colorado.
- One is related to the fact that most of the state’s surface water is in the western part of the state, while most of the population is in the east.
- The second is related to the fact that the Colorado River water serves not only much of Colorado, but 7 other states as well.
Address the following
1) Describe the basic geographic structure of the Colorado river and distribution infrastructure such as major dams and major diversions.
2) Explain how the different states demands for fresh water from the Colorado River are being dealt with from a legal standpoint.
3) Explain 2 problems that you see for the future of the Colorado River and how you think those future problems might be solved.
In your initial post, please provide 3-4 references in APA format and include in-text citations.