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Reclamation Funds ICS Water Optimization Study

Reclamation Funds ICS Water Optimization Study

An ICS-led water optimization study will explore opportunities for the City of Thornton and Larimer and Weld counties to strategically repurpose—or reirrigate—farmland following a large municipal water transfer. In 2019, the City of Thornton commissioned development of a Northern Properties Stewardship Plan (NPSP)—an effort to identify long-term management and dispossession strategies for 18,000 acres of farmland the city owns in Larimer and Weld counties. Thornton acquired the farms and their associated water rights in the 1980s to meet future demand for municipal water; it secured its...

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Mitigating the Economic Impacts of Dry-Up

Mitigating the Economic Impacts of Dry-Up

As water on Colorado’s Front Range moves from farms to cities, a pioneering ICS economic study charts a more promising course for agriculture. The purchase of 5,540 Bessemer Ditch Company shares from Pueblo County farmers by the Board of Water Works of Pueblo (Pueblo Water) will provide the City of Pueblo, Colorado, with reliable water long into the future, but it will dry up one-third of all Bessemer irrigated farmland (approximately 5,000 of 15,000 acres) in the St. Charles Mesa, Vineland, and Avondale communities. The loss to Pueblo County agriculture following dry-up is expected to...

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ICS Maps Course for Spur Water Policy Institute

ICS Maps Course for Spur Water Policy Institute

Colorado State University selected CDR Associates, LRE Water, and ICS Consulting to initiate planning for a new water policy institute at the future Spur campus at the National Western Center in Denver. “The Spur campus is a place made for the public, and a place to convene the greatest minds around the biggest issues of our time,” said CSU System Executive Vice Chancellor Amy Parsons. “Water is a critical issue that requires interdisciplinary expertise and collaboration, and the water policy institute is positioned to begin this work prior to the grand opening of the CSU Spur campus in...

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Harvard Grant Supports ICS Water Fund Feasibility Study

Harvard Grant Supports ICS Water Fund Feasibility Study

Harvard University is helping ICS clients explore how social impact capital can be used to optimize limited irrigation water supplies in the American West. A grant from the university’s Loeb Fellowship Alumni Council is supporting an ICS-led collaboration among Colorado stakeholders and national conservation, finance, and water market experts. An October convening in Pueblo County, Colorado, kicked off the effort. The convening purpose was to explore the design of a water optimization fund, a conceptual impact investment vehicle, which could help farmers and conservation groups in Pueblo...

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ICS-TNC Pursue Green Infrastructure Partnership

ICS-TNC Pursue Green Infrastructure Partnership

An ICS-led team of scientists, policy analysts, and program managers from The Nature Conservancy (TNC) launched a plan to help restore the 927-square-mile Fountain Creek Watershed. Implementation—focused on collaborative stream management planning, forest health initiatives, and green-stormwater-infrastructure partnerships—begins with explorations of a new green infrastructure partnership between TNC and the City of Colorado Springs. The partnership would catalyze investment in nature-based stormwater management solutions and tap into the momentum of numerous coalitions working to improve...

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ICS—Nature Conservancy Issue Urban Watershed Plan

ICS—Nature Conservancy Issue Urban Watershed Plan

The Nature Conservancy (TNC) contracted ICS to help the organization determine how it could support more integrated, effective approaches to watershed health and management in and around southern Colorado’s growing Front Range metropolitan regions. Natural Solutions for a Communally Vibrant, Ecologically Resilient Fountain Creek: A Strategic Framework and Opportunities Analysis (Natural Solutions) is the result of that effort. Natural Solutions informs potential TNC engagements in and around the Fountain Creek Watershed by combining goals, strategies, and key actions the organization can...

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