“Zombie Pipeline” Brought Back From the Dead

Sarah Stern | | BrainsBrains
Colorado’s Front Range, Credit: Michael Kirsh.

Brought back to life with a new funding partner, the Green Water Pipeline project hopes to bring water supply from Utah’s Green River down to Colorado’s Front Range. When pursuing a master’s degree in the mid-2000s in resource economics and agriculture at Colorado State University, Aaron Million started turning the gears in his brain with late nights in the library and early 1900s Colorado state maps. He came across a 41-mile piece of land off in the northwest corner of the state where the Green River goes down through Utah to Wyoming and then through Colorado to inevitably meet up with Colorado’s Front Range. Million imagined a pipeline system that would tap into the Green River-fed Flaming Gorge Reservoir and bring water to the Front Range. 

Colleagues and professionals observing Million’s work questioned the necessity, and whether this is Colorado’s water to receive. He countered arguments by explaining that the Colorado River Basin is split into the Upper and Lower Basins, containing states in the area and the percentages of water they receive. Colorado, which is part of the Upper Basin, needs approximately 51.7% of the water supply separated from the Upper Basin but is getting nowhere near that amount. Million proposed that transporting the water through this pipeline would be better allocated towards this percentage. 

The Colorado River, Credit Gabriel Tovar.









Currently, the Front Range water supply is rapidly depleting. More than one million homes and thousands of farms rely on the Front Range for their water supply. According to a study done in 2019 by Water Education Colorado,

“In the next 25 years, if the state does nothing to set more water aside in Lake Powell, the Front Range could lose up to 97 percent of its Colorado River water.”

Implementing this pipeline would help these homes and families maintain a steady water supply. Additionally, as the water is carried east, the proposal will generate between 500 and 1,000 megawatts of in-line hydroelectric power, helping generate electricity and providing flood control, clean water, and irrigation support. 

Million has proposed versions of this pipeline for over a decade, receiving the nickname “Zombie Pipeline” for the amount of declined versions. With recent investors and development partners such as MasTec, an infrastructure company based in Florida, teaming up with his newly announced company called Water Horse Resources, there is new hope to resurface his ongoing proposal.

After being denied and revised, the current pipeline proposal entails extracting 55,000 acre-feet of water from the Green River at Flaming Gorge Reservoir in Utah and transporting it east through southern Wyoming and south to Colorado’s Front Range through 338 miles of pipe.

Million’s spark of an idea has traveled through decades of changes. Water Horse Resources sees new hope to bring back his late-night library idea and truly turn it into something to help many. 

Colorado USA, Credit: Kody Goodson

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8 thoughts on ““Zombie Pipeline” Brought Back From the Dead

  1. Bad idea, horrible idea, then all of Cali will move to the front range,ugh, we already dislike them now, it’ll get real ugly, worst than it is now. The quality of life in CO is in the toilet. In fact this is a theme throughout the west, nobody likes Californians, go figure.

  2. It’s probably a mild form of autism. In general I’m great. I’m aware I’m over the top. I like it that way.

  3. QAnOnYmOus idk, I first called myself AnOnYmOus until you decided that belonged to you, so I can only imagine what happened to my former “Wheezus” name…I think I’m about done with this strange commhnity. Unofficial Networks reports the same news and doesn’t have a comment section so I don’t have to hear what any intermediate skier east coast libertarians have to think about anything

  4. back in my day pipelines were used for moving water, not smoking reefer

    water used to be a good thing. i guess those youngsters don’t like water any more

  5. One can only imagine why you keep having conversations with yourself on this site? Are you alright? Do you need a friend?

  6. WTF, “Wheezus”? Why you stealing my name? Come up with one of your own, you unoriginal lam ass.

  7. Great idea AnOn, when both SF & LA dry up, guess where those 5 million residents are going? Straight for your spot. You’ll have a lot more material to complain about, Jeezus!

  8. Let’s get rid of all the unnatural pipelines that service LA and SF so those places dry up and wither away.

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