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Glossary of Terms#

  • 401 Water Quality Certification – The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reviews and issues water quality certifications under Section 401 of the federal Clean Water Act for projects or actions applicable to the provisions of the Colorado 401 Certification Regulation.
  • Acre-Foot or Acre-Feet (AF) – The volume of water equal to about 326,000 gallons; one acre–foot can supply water to three to four single-family homes in Fort Collins per year. The maximum volume of Horsetooth Reservoir is about 157,000 acre-feet and the proposed volume of Halligan would go from about 6,400 acre-feet to approximately 14,500 acre-feet.
  • Colorado-Big Thompson (CBT) Project – A Bureau of Reclamation project operated by Northern Water that brings water from the Colorado River basin to the east side of the continental divide via a tunnel and the Big Thompson River to several locations including Horsetooth Reservoir. Fort Collins Utilities currently owns 6% of shares in the CBT project. The Halligan Water Supply Project is not designed to store any CBT water.
  • Corps – Short for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the lead permitting agency for the Halligan Water Supply Project.
  • Cubic-Feet per Second (cfs) – The volumetric flow rate equal to one cubic-foot flowing every second.
  • EIS (DEIS, FEIS) – Short for Environmental Impact Statement (draft or final), a report detailing the findings of the NEPA permitting process. An EIS can be reviewed by the public and comments are typically addressed in a final EIS. See also “NEPA.”
  • Excess Water Use Surcharge – Fees assessed on commercial customers, including some HOAs, who exceed their annual water allotment.
  • Firm Yield – A measure of the ability of a water supply system or reservoir to meet water demands through a series of drought years.
  • Fish and Wildlife Mitigation Plan – Required by Colorado Parks and Wildlife. It is designed to address the impacts to fish and wildlife due to the development and water diversion associated with a project.
  • GMA – Short for Growth Management Area, which is the planned boundary of the City of Fort Collins’ future City limits.
  • GPCD – Short for gallons per capita per day, a measurement of municipal water use.
  • LEDPA – Short for Least Environmentally Damaging Practicable Alternative, which is what the Corps permits through the NEPA permitting process. See also “NEPA.”
  • Larimer County 1041 Permit – State Statutes allow local governments to designate certain areas and
    activities of state interest and require permits for development involving those areas and activities. A 1041 Permit is required prior to conducting any activity that has been designated as a Matter of State Interest (dams, power plants, solar energy power plants, transmission lines, pipelines, etc.). 
  • Mitigation – The process or result of making something less severe or damaging. Mitigation includes avoiding impacts, minimizing impacts and compensating for unavoidable impacts.
  • NEPA – Short for National Environmental Policy Act. The act was signed into law in 1970 and requires federal agencies to assess the environmental effects of proposed or permitted actions prior to making decisions.
  • NISP – Short for Northern Integrated Supply Project, a water project sponsored by Northern Water. The proposed Glade Reservoir is part of NISP.
  • Northern Water or NCWCD – Short for Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District. Northern Water
    operates the Colorado–Big Thompson (CBT) Project and is involved in several other regional water  projects on behalf of their participants, including NISP. See also “Colorado–Big Thompson (CBT) Project” and “NISP.”
  • NPIC – Short for North Poudre Irrigation Company, an irrigation company that supplies water to farmers
    north of Fort Collins and is the owner of all water currently stored in Halligan Reservoir. The City of Fort Collins currently owns about 36% of the shares in the company.
  • Planning Demand Level – Water use (demand) in gpcd used for water supply planning purposes. The
    planning demand level factors into determining the amount of water supplies and/or facilities needed. See
    also “gpcd.”
  • Storage Reserve Factor – Refers to a commonly used engineering principle in designing water supply
    systems to address short-term supply interruptions. As defined in the WSDMP the storage reserve factor
    incorporates having 20% of annual demands in storage through the 1-in-50 drought equating to about 3.5
    months of winter (indoor) demands or 1.5 months of summer demands. See also “WSDMP.”
  • Tri–Districts – The combination of three regional water districts that also serve areas within Fort Collin’s GMA: East Larimer County (ELCO), Fort Collins–Loveland (FCLWD) and North Weld County Water Districts (NWCWD). These districts share the same water treatment plant, Soldier Canyon Filter Plant, located adjacent to Fort Collins Utilities’ Water Treatment Facility. The Tri-Districts were originally partners in the Halligan Project but withdrew in 2009. See also “GMA.”
  • Water Supply Requirement (WSR) – Previously known as Raw Water Requirements, require new or existing development to turn in water rights or cash-in-lieu of water rights to support the water needs of that development or increase existing water allotments. Cash is used to increase the firm yield and long-term reliability of the City’s supply system (e.g., purchase additional storage capacity). See also “Excess Water Use Surcharge.”
  • Water Supply & Demand Management Policy (WSDMP) – This document provides Fort Collins Utilities
    guidance in ensuring adequate, safe and reliable water supply while managing water demand.
  • Yield or Water Rights Yield – Refers to the amount of water that is produced from a water right. The yield of water rights vary from year to year depending on the amount of water available (i.e., low or high river runoff) and the priority of the water right. See also “Firm Yield.”