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Old 03-20-2018, 04:06 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,330 posts, read 4,354,278 times
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Colorado Springs has three years worth of water, Utilities says

https://www.csindy.com/TheWire/archi...utilities-says

"Colorado Springs Utilities says that despite the dry weather of late, its water storage system is at 80 percent capacity, which translates to three years worth of water.

That's pretty amazing, considering the city doesn't sit anywhere near a major river, but rather relies on snowpack on Pikes Peak and transmountain water sources."



This dry winter reminds me of 2012. We had the Waldo Canyon fire that year. We had been in dry conditions for many months. I'm worried about fire risks this year.

I am impressed that our city has a great supply of water in spite of the drought. People like to attack government, but this example of government planning and foresight shows excellent results. Sure, our water is expensive but it's available.

We could easily turn that 3 years of supply into more of we decided to greatly reduce the bluegrass lawns. That's where most of our water goes.
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Old 03-20-2018, 05:59 AM
 
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Personally I think 3 years is not enough - just look at what happened in California recently. I do think they're planning and that's good, but if we have 3 more years like this year and don't do anything significantly different in terms of water usage etc. we'd be in big trouble. Those of us who have been here more than a few years are familiar enough with the dry cycles here to know we can't count on the future being like the recent past all the time. Especially in an era when weather cycles are changing globally. We now know historically there have drought periods that lasted a dozen years.

And as for fires - yes, I am very worried, and we've already had homes lost in fires this year - an elementary school is closed today because of that same fire still burning and causing smoke issues - and there is almost certainly more to come. It didn't make the news too much but one of the Fort Carson fires in the past few weeks was quite close to Cheyenne Mountain State Park and a lot of homes - I passed the burn area on Sunday - Cheyenne Mountain in general is a huge disaster waiting to happen if another 'perfect storm' comes our way like it did for Waldo and Black Forest. And Fort Carson was setting off bombs and artillery again today just like the day the last fire started. The deadliest fire in our city's history was started on Fort Carson and traveled far enough to threaten the Broadmoor Hotel. Before Waldo I would have totally scoffed at the idea that it could happen again, citing changes in infrastructure, development, technology, landscape, etc. Now I know Broadmoor Bluffs could be another Mountain Shadows tomorrow. Decades ago, deadliest fire in El Paso County history started at Fort Carson | Colorado Springs Gazette, News
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:36 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
3,794 posts, read 1,467,232 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vision67 View Post

I am impressed that our city has a great supply of water in spite of the drought. People like to attack government, but this example of government planning and foresight shows excellent results. Sure, our water is expensive but it's available.
Don't say that in the political forum it would ruffle all the anarcho capitalists feathers.
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Old 03-21-2018, 07:29 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
2,668 posts, read 1,669,907 times
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The risk of urban wildland fire within Cos is always a possibility when you look at the geography and layout of the area. Red Rock, Bear Creek, Palmer Park, Erindale, and countless open space areas can all be at risk for forest and grass fires year round. IMO, some years the risk is lower, but overall I'd say we are in the high risk category every year.

Palmer was fairly visionary in creating the city's water system and securing remote sources that we have been able to develop and expand over time. That does give us the luxury of looking at other means for future growth.

Also, a little know fact about land development in El Paso County is that anytime a developer is putting together a land use plan for submission, they have to show a 300 year water source to get approval. This is considerably more strict than most of the rest of CO that only requires 100 years and is part of the reason we don't see housing starts going through the roof despite the demand.
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Old 03-22-2018, 08:32 AM
 
649 posts, read 341,042 times
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I assume that means 3 yrs at regular usage? Does that mean with conservation it could be 5 or 6 years?
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Old 03-23-2018, 03:30 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
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Yes, and if we look back at the conservation efforts around the Waldo Canyon and Black Forest fire time frames, we see that we can do it, we simply need to make it a norm without being legally obligated by the city.
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Old 03-25-2018, 11:08 PM
 
230 posts, read 123,440 times
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How is the water in monument? Are the fires just as much of a threat there?
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Old 03-26-2018, 04:57 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,330 posts, read 4,354,278 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Postal77 View Post
How is the water in monument? Are the fires just as much of a threat there?
Fires are a risk all along the front range. That includes Monument.

As for their water, it is not supplied from Colorado Springs Utilities. I'd guess they are using well water as a source.
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Old 03-26-2018, 08:17 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
2,668 posts, read 1,669,907 times
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It depends on where exactly in Monument you are referring to. Monument Water District, Tri-View Metro, Woodmoor Water, Forest View, Gleneagle District all have jurisdiction over various areas in northern El Paso County. While some may have legal surface water access, I believe most use the Denver Basin aquifer for water. You would need to check with your specific supplier to find out.

Like Vision says, wild fire is a risk everywhere in CO, even out on the prairie where grass fires can move faster than fire crews.
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