Mark Czaplewski, biologist with the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program reported at Central Platte NRD’s board meeting this past week that the Program’s Governance Committee is starting to prioritize water supply options that will take the place of what was earlier envisioned to be accomplished by the J2 Regulating Reservoir Project, including broad scale recharge projects and slurry wall storage projects.
Czaplewski said the first broad scale recharge project will be on 400 acres of land owned by NPPD’s Cottonwood Ranch property east of Overton. Details on possible locations for slurry wall projects are being worked out, however, to accomplish the Program’s water goals, five to eight sites may be needed. The first such site will be used as a pilot/demonstration project and costs are estimated between $5-6 million range.
CPNRD has contributed to a portion of those Nebraska shares and could choose to fund a portion of the new projects. The Committee continues to discuss plans to extend the First Increment to 2032 to allow the Program to continue work on these water goals. New federal funding and new funding from Colorado and Wyoming would be needed.