Skip to main content

South Platte Regional Opportunities Water Group:

LSPWCD was an original member and contributor of the South Platte Regional Opportunities Water Group (SPROWG) since its inception in 2016.  LSPWCD remains actively involved with SPROWG and the concepts of regional infrastructure to meet growing demands in the South Platte basin without permanently drying up irrigated agriculture.  SPROWG began after the completion of the first South Platte Basin Implementation Plan (SPBIP) in 2015.  The leadership of the Metro and South Platte roundtables convened to discuss ways of moving some of the in-basin ideas documented in the SPBIP towards implementation.  In-basin solutions such as the reuse of fully consumptive water supplies, leasing of agriculture supplies and the development of unappropriated waters in the basin were all analyzed to determine the feasibility of meeting future and current water supply shortages in the basin.  Other parallel efforts were also occurring during the feasibility work of SPROWG, including the work of the Northeast Colorado Water Cooperative, the South Platte Storage Study commissioned by the Colorado General Assembly in 2016, and the beginning phases of the Platte Valley Water Partnership.  All of these concurrent, parallel efforts pointed to the ability to divert, store and use unappropriated water in the basin at various locations and during various times.  Other types of water supplies were also identified and analyzed as supplies that could help address demand shortages in the basin.  Development of storage and conveyance infrastructure was critical to the success of using in-basin water supplies.  Regional collaboration was also identified as an important element in increasing water supplies to meet demand shortages.  LSPWCD served as the fiscal agent for a Colorado Water Conservation Board grant to study the feasibility of the SPROWG concept which was finalized in March of 2020.  Since the completion of the SPROWG feasibility study, the original steering committee has continued to meet to determine potential next steps in advancing SPROWG.  The steering committee in the fall of 2022, identified Brown and Caldwell as its project manager to move SPROWG forward and has applied for a Colorado Water Plan grant to conduct significant outreach within the South Platte basin to determine whether water providers and stakeholders within the basin are interested in and committed to implementing the SPROWG principles and concepts moving forward.  LSPWCD remains an actively involved partner with SPROWG and is committed to upholding the guiding principles outlined by SPROWG within the 2020 feasibility study.  These guiding principles have been upheld by the Platte Valley Water Partnership.  The SPROWG  Feasibility Study along with the Guiding Principles are available in the link below.