LARIMER COUNTY ENVIRONMENTAL AND SCIENCE ADVISORY BOARD (ESAB)

 MEETING MINUTES

July 14, 2015

 

 

Members In Attendance:

 

Guests:

Jane Abels

 

Nick Schipanski

Richard Alper

 

 

Cassie Archuleta

 

Staff :

Jeremy Deuto

 

Doug Ryan

Jim Gerek 

 

 

Michael Jones, Chair

 

 

Kimberly Karish

 

 

Evelyn King

 

 

Ryan McShane

 

 

 

Introduction of Members and Guests:

Those in attendance introduced themselves. The Advisory Board welcomed new members Jane Abels and Jim Gerek. 

 

Discussion Items:

NISP Review.  The Advisory Board continued its review of the Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) for the Northern Integrated Supply Project (NISP). 

 

The SDEIS was released by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on June 19, and is open for a 60 day public comment period ending on September 3.  The purpose of the project is to supply 40,000 acre feet of new municipal water supply annually to 15 providers working cooperatively through the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District. The County Commissioners have asked the ESAB to review the document and provide comments for their consideration ahead of the review deadline.  The applicant’s preferred alternative includes the construction of Glade Reservoir in Larimer County. 

 

At their meeting in June, the Advisory Board selected individual members to review environmental issues in the SDEIS and to report back to the group in July.   Members submitted their initial comments by email.  Each of the members at the meeting discussed their review findings or overall conclusions.  A common topic that emerged from that discussion included the identification of a number of important environmental issues that have not been completely studied, and which are slated for more work prior to the final EIS.  Members also noted that a number of the conceptual mitigation measures in the SDEIS have not been developed to the point where their effectiveness can be evaluated.  Much of the technical work was very well prepared, and found to meet accepted standards related to specific topic areas.

 

The modeling related to hydrology used median river flow values to estimate affects.  It was pointed out that the most significant environmental impacts occur at the maximum or minimum values, and that evaluation of the full range of values would produce a more accurate assessment of impacts.  Water quality impacts related to higher temperatures and chemical contaminants were seen as some of the most important potential impacts.

 

The Advisory Board members acknowledged that summarizing and prioritizing the review issues will be an important step for communicating to the County Commissioners.  Members were asked to review their individual notes in light of the discussion at the meeting, and to outline their top observations or conclusions in bullet format ahead of the August meeting.  Members were asked to submit their bullet list by email no later than August 4.  The Chair will work with Doug Ryan to assemble and organize the bullet items, and to provide a summation and general overview of findings for review at the August 11 meeting.  The Advisory Board’s conclusions and overall recommendations about the SDEIS will be developed at that meeting.  It is anticipated that a draft ESAB letter to the Commissioners will be sent out for email review by the members following the August 11 meeting. 

 

Approval of June Minutes:

Minutes from the June 23, 2015 meeting were approved as presented.

 

Updates:  

Doug Ryan noted that applications are currently open for the 2015 Environmental Stewardship Awards.  Information about the awards is available at http://www.larimer.org/boards/eab/Awards/awards.htm.

 

ESAB Issue Index:

Doug Ryan will update the Issue Index related to the NISP topic discussed at the meeting.

 

August Meeting Agenda:

NISP review and comment. 

 

Adjourn:

The meeting ended at 9:00 PM