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Save the Dawson!

Editorís note: The following are excerpts from a letter written by Terry Stokka concerning efforts to save the Dawson aquifer. The NFH will be investigating this information for the June issue.
Black Forest residents are concerned about the combined effect of water extraction from the Dawson aquifer planned by Cherokee Metropolitan District and the proposed private wells in the†Flying Horse North development and additional sites near County Line Road and Black Forest Road.†Cherokee currently supplies water to 18,000 customers in southeastern Colorado Springs†and has rights to pump millions of gallons of Black Forest water to these customers outside the forest.††Consider these facts.†Using the normal 5-acre average for each residential lot, one 1,000-acre area where the Cherokee wells are sited would contain 200 homes and 200 individual wells.†If†Cherokee pumps their allotted water from the Dawson aquifer, the water taken from the Dawson would equate to 2100 homes, a tenfold increase.†This issue is not confined to the Flying Horse North area because municipalities and water districts are seeking new sources of water all along the Denver basin and are purchasing water rights†in many places to secure water for future use.†Landowners may think they can sell a large portion of their water rights and still retain enough water for their own use, but they are jeopardizing†the water supply for surrounding landowners and individual wells.†The goals of the Save the Dawson Project are twofold:
  1. Find a way to keep the Dawson aquifer water from Flying Horse North and the County Line site from being pumped and piped to residential developments outside the Black Forest.
  2. Work with the Colorado water community to preserve the Dawson aquifer water for residential developments that are built above it.†Dawson water should stay within the Black Forest†for Black Forest residents.
In order to measure the impact of these planned actions, the Friends of the Black Forest Preservation Plan is retaining an attorney to coordinate this effort and plans to develop a groundwater†model of that area that will be a useful tool to show the results of Cherokee pumping and Flying Horse wells.†… The Friends are working with a hydrogeologist from the Black Forest to build this model.Completion of this model as well as consultations with water attorneys, developers and other experts will be costly and we are asking you as Black Forest residents to share in this cost so we†can move forward.†The groundwater model will cost about $16,000 and other attorney and consultation costs will bring the total up to about $40,000.†Your contributions will help us cover these†costs and protect individual water supplies for all of our wells.Please consider a contribution to the Friends of the Black Forest Preservation Plan.†Tax-deductible contributions can be mailed to FOBFPP, Box 88474, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80908.†A†receipt will be mailed to you for your records. If you could connect us with a potential larger donor, please contact Terry Stokka at†

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