Colorado rivers receive mostly poor marks on ‘report card’

Jul 16, 2017

Credit Courtesy of Conservation Colorado

Colorado’s rivers received their first-ever report cards from an environmental organization last week, and it’s a mixed bag.

 

Conservation Colorado assessed the eight major river basins in the state, and only the Yampa, which runs through the Northwest corner of the state, received top marks.

Major diversions, dams and low flows lead to the D grade for the the Colorado River. The report said current demands on the river are not sustainable.

The largest basin in the state, the Arkansas, earned a C. While it’s famous for trout fishing and rafting, the Arkansas is polluted by heavy metals from mining operations and also sees lowered flows because of diversions.