Notice: Undefined property: stdClass::$image_fulltext in /home/indiancountrynew/public_html/plugins/content/social2s/social2s.php on line 1531

Notice: Undefined property: stdClass::$image_intro in /home/indiancountrynew/public_html/plugins/content/social2s/social2s.php on line 1533

Notice: Undefined property: stdClass::$image_fulltext in /home/indiancountrynew/public_html/plugins/content/social2s/social2s.php on line 1531

Notice: Undefined property: stdClass::$image_intro in /home/indiancountrynew/public_html/plugins/content/social2s/social2s.php on line 1533

Long-stalled water project headed to completion near Durango 6-30-07

DURANGO, Colo. (AP) - Proving that the government's dam-building days in the West are not over, the Animas-La Plata project is nearing completion.

“We're proceeding at a good pace. The dam should be done this fall and the pumping station and inlet conduit a year later,” said Barry Longwell, deputy construction engineer for the project.

Environmentalists stalled the project both in congress and in the courts, saying it was too costly and unneeded. Bruce Babbitt, interior secretary under former President Clinton, believed the proliferation of dams that made the arid West bloom had caused untold damage and he presided over the destruction of several.

Supporters of Animas-La Plata said it had to be built to meet treaty obligations with the Ute Mountain Ute and Southern Ute tribes.

Longwell told the Durango Herald that construction will be completed next summer or fall.

The reservoir behind the Ridges Basin Dam, called Lake Nighthorse after former U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, who helped push the project through Congress, will begin in 2009. It will likely take two years to fill.

The dam is 80 percent complete and the pumping station 70 percent. The 2.5-mile pipeline that will connect them is 20 percent done.

“The A-LP is a vital component of our water infrastructure in Southwest Colorado. With the cost of fuel, cement and steel rising each year at rapid rates, we can save the taxpayers money by completing the project in a timely manner,” U.S. Rep. John Salazar, D-Colo., said in a statement.

The two Ute tribes each have 40 percent of the 120,000 acre-feet of water to be stored at Ridges Basin. Non-tribal partners, including the city of Durango, will get some of the water.

Some water also will be shipped to the Navajo Nation in New Mexico.
0
0
0