Facing Colorado River shortage, 30 urban suppliers pledge to target decorative grasses for supply
The Colorado River is the lifeblood of the Western United States. It has been referred to as “America’s First National River” and has a unique role in the cultural, economic and cultural history of America.
Water for lawns, parks and other public uses is necessary for irrigation, hydropower generation, hydroelectric production, drinking water, recreation, and industrial uses such as steel and chemical production. It serves an essential role in supporting and sustaining our rural way of life.
In California alone, 1,370 square miles of farmland are irrigated with Colorado River water. During the dry winter season, the amount of precipitation falls well below the “normal” annual average, resulting in reduced river flow which, in turn, can cause the loss of vegetation and other natural resources.
In the state of Colorado, more than 10,000 farms lose over 70% of their irrigation water — an average of $2 million every year — because of the lack of moisture in the soil and lower river flows.
In fact, during the 2017-18 water year, the federal government spent $26.5 million for a total of $30 million to restore or replace low-flow supplies in the river basin region.
According to the National Association of Development Organizations, an economic development organization, the average cost to buy, install or operate low-flow water features in a residential development is over $10,000.
That is approximately $200,000 per acre of landscaping and per well.
More and more consumers are turning to decorative irrigation grasses to increase the value of their properties and the satisfaction they will receive from their landscaping.
The use of decorative grasses to increase the value of residential properties is a new trend that has grown in popularity among homeowners and contractors.
“The use of decorative or native grasses has become a powerful tool in urban design,” said Tom Crouch, of Crouch Design in Westminster. “For