I commend the Herald for its editorial on forward-looking planning for a water supply for the Dryside (Opinion, Herald,Nov. 20).
However, there is one practical tool for water planning that seldom gets the press it deserves. In July, the state of
Colorado wisely legalized the collection and use of rainwater for most well owners and those entitled to have a well.
Rainwater is an easily available and high-quality source of water that can be used for landscaping or treated for
household and potable uses.
Consider this: Residents of the Dryside receive on average between 10 and 15 inches of precipitation between April and
November. This means that a 2,000-square-foot roof in this area can collect between 11,000 and 17,000 gallons of water
per year on average - and more can be had depending on winter snowmelt cycles.
This is no trivial amount of fresh water for those hauling water by the truckload. Harvesting rain can also ease the
urban storm-water pollutant load to our local waterways and minimize the energy consumed in treating and pumping water
uphill that is destined for landscape irrigation.
Colorado should continue to open the door to the potentially far-reaching benefits of rainwater collection.
Tyler Scheid, Durango