Drought  Virtual Tour

Drought Virtual Tour

Maura Bennett
Maura Bennett

Colorado agencies are standing by to hear from farmers, ranchers, and communities affected by the ongoing 2020 drought.

Les Owen, Colorado Conservation Services Director says in a normal year staff would be canvassing the state speaking to people in person, and documenting the drought impacts but the coronavirus has made that impractical.

Owen: “The Colorado Water Conservation Board is standing up a virtual drought tour website. We’re encouraging folks to submit stories and pictures and things like that to this website to give a virtual drought tour. We’re hoping to get folks from around the state to send in their stories and pictures.”

The State Department of Agriculture, Water Conservation Board, and Colorado State University are leading the outreach effort.

Gov. Polis activated the Colorado Drought Mitigation and Response Plan in June. The plan includes the implementation of an Agricultural Impact Task Force; and the documentation of first-hand accounts of the drought’s impact on farms, ranches, forests, fields, and rivers.

Owen: ”The drought has impacted everyone from irrigated agriculture with the surface water supplies being low and not making it through the end of the season for some folks. Some dryland crops won’t make it this year because there hasn’t been the precipitation needed. Rangeland and pastures, it’s a mixed bag this year. There are some areas that are decent.”

Owen says comments from producers will directly inform current and future statewide drought response efforts.

The comment page is on the Colorado Water Conservation Board’s website.


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