It’s a big deal.

The Colorado Water Conservation Board is in the final stages of putting together the first-ever comprehensive water plan for the entire state. For months, officials and water experts have been working to come up with a plan that will provide for the massive urban growth expected in Colorado in the coming decades while protecting water resources for agriculture, tourism, and environmental protection.

Thursday is the deadline for public comments on the Colorado Water Plan. Click here to visit the official website for the plan and make your voice heard.

Conservation is the key to providing for Colorado’s water future. In an arid state with finite water resources, we can’t just pump and dam our way to providing for future needs. More transmountain diversions of water to the Front Range from the Western Slope is not the answer.

Second, we must preserve river and stream flows for recreation and environmental protection. Colorado’s tourism industry is critically important to our economy, bringing in $9 billion. The recent disruption to tourism on the Animas River after an accidental pollution spill demonstrated again how vital healthy rivers are to the bottom line for thousands of Coloradans. We must value robust stream and river flows for recreation and the environment as much as every other water use priority.

Finally, we need smarter arrangements to share water between farms and cities. Modernizing irrigation systems for agriculture saves water that everyone can use.

Bottom line: water matters to everyone, wherever we live in Colorado. Water connects us all, and how we manage our water today will determine the quality of life our children and grandchildren will enjoy.

Take a moment right now to comment on Colorado’s draft Water Plan. Your comments will factor directly into the final Plan released later this fall.

Thanks for taking a moment to make your voice heard on behalf of Colorado’s most important natural resource.