$150,000 Received for River Restoration in Grand Valley and Dolores River

May 23rd, 2019
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact:   
Cara Kukuraitis
Outreach Coordinator | RiversEdge West
 
 
 
RiversEdge West Receives $150,000 for River Restoration in Grand Valley and Beyond
 
This past March, the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) awarded RiversEdge West with a $150,000 Watershed Restoration Grant to complete river restoration projects from now until fall of 2021. 
 
Within western Colorado, RiversEdge West leads two landscape-scale riparian (riverside) restoration efforts, the Desert Rivers Collaborative and the Dolores River Restoration Partnership. The Desert Rivers Collaborative is improving riparian lands along the Colorado and Gunnison rivers in Mesa and Delta counties, while the Dolores River Restoration Partnership is restoring riparian lands across the Dolores River Watershed in Colorado and Utah.
 
Funds from CWCB will help RiversEdge West continue to focus on:
  • Restoring riparian habitat in the Grand Valley, specifically in areas that were recently impacted by wildfire.
    • These areas include properties owned or managed by Colorado Parks and Wildlife (e.g., Skippers Island, Horsethief Canyon State Wildlife Area, and the Island Acres section of James M. Robb Colorado River State Park), a Bureau of Reclamation-owned property near Cameo, and a Halliburton parcel near Cameo.
  • Reducing hazardous fuels in a riparian corridor that runs through a section of the James M. Robb Colorado River State Park.
  • Treating and following-up on 248 acres of riparian lands in the Dolores River corridor - from the Dolores River’s confluence with Disappointment Creek to the Utah state line, just north of Gateway - and revegetating these areas with native plants.
Why this work matters:
Invasive plant species, including tamarisk (also known as salt cedar) and Russian olive, degrade the ability of riparian areas to provide essential habitat and resources for humans and wildlife.
 
Tamarisk and Russian olive’s dense growth patterns block access for recreation and agriculture, create hazards for river runners, invade popular campsites, channelize waterways, and increase the frequency and severity of wildfires.
 
Both species displace native vegetation, which negatively impacts fish and wildlife habitat. Water usage by these plants can also be substantial, most notably in areas where these species displace less thirsty plants such as sagebrush and rabbitbrush.
 
Learn more:
If you are interested in touring local restoration sites up-close and personal and learning more about riparian restoration, consider joining RiversEdge West for their next Raft the River trip on August 24th. Rimrock Adventure guides and hand-picked local river experts will provide an informative, fun float down the Colorado River with dinner, drinks, live music, and prizes to follow.
 
For more information on the raft trip or to learn more about local restoration projects, please contact REW at 970-256-7400.
 

RiversEdge West's

mission is to advance the restoration of riparian lands through collaboration, education, and technical assistance.

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