Arkansas Valley Conduit - The lower Arkansas River valley is an area where the cost of water treatment continues to rise as a result of poor quality drinking water. This portion of the river is the most saline stream in the United States. In addition, some water supply wells are contaminated with radionuclides. In an effort to comply with regulatory requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act, it was proposed to build the Arkansas Valley Conduit (Conduit) from Pueblo Reservoir to deliver clean drinking water to the area. The pipeline is an original feature of the Fry-Ark Project legislation in 1962. However, the Conduit was not constructed primarily because of the beneficiaries’ inability to repay the construction costs. In 2009, Congress amended the original Fry-Ark legislation. The amendment featured a cost sharing plan with 65 percent federal and 35 percent local funding. The locally funded portion would be repaid by the District to the federal government over a period of 50 years. The Conduit is an excellent example of spanning our river’s resources throughout the District boundaries. The proposed AVC will create a reliable water supply to the participants for generations to come. In November of 2010, Reclamation began the National Environmental Protection Act Environmental Impact Statement ( NEPA EIS), a resource analyses on the study area, on the construction and operation of the proposed Conduit, and its effects on environmental resources and geographical areas. This study is slated to conclude in mid-2013. The District, as the facilitator of the Conduit, continues to lobby for appropriated federal funding to pay for cost of the study, engineering, and construction. Other future considerations for the proposed Conduit that are currently in development are pre-engineering and design, and construction. The proposed Conduit is scheduled to go on-line in 2022. The importance of clean drinking water in southeastern Colorado areas provides the opportunity for development. Improving the water supply provides capacity to grow into a foreseeable future for the citizens and businesses within the District boundaries.
Click Here for the Final Enviormental Impact Statement
For more information: United States Bureau of Reclamation