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Plan to Pipe Missouri River Water to Colorado

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DENVER (KMOX) - The battle for more river water is about to get even more serious.

Along with the debate over whether to send more water down the Missouri River for navigation purposes, enter Colorado in the picture.

The Colorado River is low on water and, according to the New York Times, a plan by the Federal Bureau of Reclamation is about to be revealed that would take water from the Missouri River and send it into a 600 mile pipeline to the Colorado River.

It would provide the Colorado River Basin with 600,000 acre-feet of water each year. The plan reportedly calls for building a pipeline from the Missouri River to Denver along with a mammoth pumping station at Leavenworth, Kansas to send water to the mile-high city.

It would be a massive undertaking to build such a pipeline but water policy expert at the University of Colorado, Chuck Howe, is quoted as saying, given the drought situation, it’s no longer unrealistic. But Burke Griggs with the Kansas Agriculture Department is quoted as saying “if this gets any traction, people in the Missouri River Basin probably will scream.”

Like the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, the Colorado – which supplies water to residents of Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Arizona and California – is also feeling the effects of the drought.

The New York Times reports this concept was leaked in advance of a report expected this week by the Bureau of Reclamation.

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