LARIMER COUNTY ENVIRONMENTAL AND SCIENCE ADVISORY BOARD (ESAB)

 MEETING MINUTES

July 11th, 2017

 


 

Members In Attendance:

Jane Abels

Richard Alper

Corey Broeckling

Richard Conant

Jim Gerek

Kimberly Karish

Evelyn King

David Lehman

Matt Tobler

 

 

 

 

 

Guests

Adam Jokerst, City of Fort Collins Utilities

Carol Webb,  City of Fort Collins  Utilities

 

 

 

Staff :

Shelley Bayard de Volo, Environmental Coordinator, Engineering

 

 

 


Meeting Start:  6:00 PM

 

Amendments or Additions to the Agenda:

None.

 

 

Introduction of Members and Guests:

New members, Richard Conant and Matt Tobler were introduced, and along with the other members, introduced themselves.  New member Daniel Beveridge could not attend due to work commitments.

 

Citizen Comments:

None

 

Discussion Items:

Halligan Water Supply Project

Adam Jokerst presented the City’s plans to expand Halligan Reservoir.  Adam presented some background on Halligan Reservoir, which was originally built in 1909 and designed to hold 6400 acre-feet of water.  The project would expand capacity to 19,500 acre-feet by raising the dam by 25 ft.  The City views the project as a cost effective way to meet future demands, especially under climate change conditions.  Currently, Fort Collins relies heavily on C-BT (Colorado-Big Thompson Project) water, which could become less reliable in the future.  The Halligan Project will allow the City to diversify its future water supply. 

 

The project also allows participants to store water that would otherwise go to the next water right.  Water would be taken in wet and average years, and supplied in dry years.  The project also has the potential to improve flows on the North Fork Poudre River because it can supply water during times when the river currently goes dry.  This will improve riparian and fish habitats.  The City looked at several alternative strategies.  The preferred alternative increased winter flow rates in several upstream reaches and did not alter in-town flows.  It provides a firm water yield to project participants and provides a drought reserve.   

 

The US Army Corp of Engineers will issue their draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in late 2017, with the Final sometime in summer of 2018.  Fort Collins is currently formulating a Conceptual Avoidance, Minimization and Mitigation Plan that will be released at the same time as the draft Environmental Impact Statement.  The ESAB will have an opportunity to review that plan and provide comments.  Design and construction is currently planned for 2019 – 2021.

 

Climate Change and Forest Health

Kimberly Karish provided an update on the latest information on the heath of forests in Larimer County.  She did a review from many Federal, State and NGO resources and found four areas that impact forest health – water, land use development, resource development and climate change.   Forest health is important for Larimer County because of its large recreational and tourism industry.  Much of Larimer County’s high elevation forests abut Federal and State forests.    Kimberly noted impacts to snow melt and water supplies from warmer winters, especially warmer nights in the spring.  She discussed the impacts of warmer winters on various bark beetle populations, and their impacts on forest health.  R. Alper asked what should the County focus on in terms of management.  Kimberly noted fire impacts and water availability (water use).  M. Tobler noted the County needs to look at values at risk and what tools the County has in its tool box.   It was noted that the State Climate Action Plan is one way the State can potentially regulate the County in terms of greenhouse gas emissions.  There was discussion that the ESAB should look into that plan. 

 

Approval of Minutes:

E. King moved, and J. Gerek seconded, to approve the April 18th minutes.  D. Lehman moved and J. Abels seconded to approve the June 13th minutes.  Both were approved, without corrections or additions, by acclimation.

 

Updates:  

Wasteshed

J. Gerek provided an update on the North Front Range Wasteshed Coalition Stakeholder Group (Group Meeting #2: Emerging Technologies & Management June 28th).  R. Alper attended the Regional Wasteshed PAC meeting June 9th. 

 

NISP

R. Alper briefly reported on Northern Water’s open house on the NISP Fish and Wildlife Mitigation and Enhancement Plan (FWMEP) June 27 at The Ranch.  J. Gerek noted that he had attended Northern Water’s open house on June 29 regarding building water conveyance pipelines to support NISP.  

 

R. Alper named K. Karish chair of the committee to provide comments on the NISP FWMEP.  Other committee members are R. Conant, M. Tobler, and M. Jones.  The committee will review the Plan and organize a consolidated set of comments.  Those comments will be presented to the BCC for potential submittal to the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission.

 

ESAB Google Calendar and Google Drive   

S. Bayard de Volo explained the Google Calendar and Drive she set up for the ESAB members to use as they wish.  Shelley will add items to the Calendar as she becomes aware of them and others can add items to the Calendar as well.  All ESAB members have read and write access to the Google Drive and documents pertaining to the various issues the ESAB studies can be stored in the Drive. 

 

ESAB Issue Index:

The issue index will be updated for the items discussed tonight.

 

Next Meeting Agenda:

August 15th is the next meeting.  Lori Hodges, Director Larimer County Emergency Management will provide an update on the County Hazardous Mitigation Plan (1.01a). 

 

Adjourn:

J. Gerek moved to adjourn, E. King seconded.  The meeting ended at 9:00 PM