Conservation Corner: White River Integrated Water Initiative Update

The White River and Douglas Creek Conservation Districts (Districts) are excited to share information about the progress that is being made on the White River Integrated Water Initiative (Initiative).  This effort began in late 2019 with a group of local stakeholders serving on the Planning Advisory Committee (PAC).  The PAC developed a mission statement and four primary goals to be accomplished through the Initiative. 

The Districts received a grant from the Colorado Water Conservation Board to coordinate and facilitate this planning effort along with diversion structure and riparian health assessments.  Approximately 20 diversion structures within the White River and Piceance Creek will be evaluated to identify opportunities for improvements that will benefit the water user, fish, and/or the health of the river.  Additionally, riparian health assessments will be conducted on another twenty sites along the White River and Piceance Creek riparian corridors.  These assessments will be completed in 2021 with the permission of the respective landowners and water right holders.

The Districts have contracted with two individuals to coordinate and facilitate the continuation of the planning process while the assessments are ongoing.  Liz Chandler will be the PAC Coordinator.  She will work closely with the PAC and all stakeholders to continue gathering information to refine the goals and objectives of the group.  This will lead to the development of an Integrated Water Management Plan or other type of plan determined by the PAC and community.

Kari Brennan will be the Project Coordinator assisting the diversion structure and riparian health assessment teams.  Kari will work closely with these two teams to determine preferred locations, contacting landowners and water right holders, and coordinating training workshops for interested landowners.    

For more information, please visit and click on the  “Integrated Water Initiative” tab.

Special to the Herald Times