News and Information
Water Planning Process History
Historical Planning Documents
Wyoming Water Facts
River Basin Plans
Bear River Basin
Green River Basin
NE River Basin
Platte River Basin
Powder/Tongue River Basin
Snake/Salt River Basin
Wind/Bighorn River Basin
Basin Advisory Groups
Mission and Purpose
GIS Web Mapping
Framework Water Plan
Platte Water Atlas
Water Search Engine
Send Us Your Comments
State Engineer's Office
Water Resources Data System
Water Plan Home Page
Water Development Office
Powder/Tongue River Basin Advisory Group
July 16, 2003
Facilitator Sherri Gregory welcomed the group and the meeting was
called to order at 6:01 p.m. All attendees introduced themselves,
followed by a review of the overall meeting agenda. A sign-in sheet was
passed around to record attendance. The next meeting is scheduled for
November 19 in Story.
Water Development Commission Report
Barry Lawrence updated the BAG on the status of the plans for the other
basins. The BAG for the Northeast Wyoming Basin will be meeting July 17
in Lusk. Open houses for the Platte River Basin were held June 2 – 4 in
Saratoga, Douglas and Pine Bluffs. Barry discussed the status of all
basin studies, and agendas for future meetings.
Tom Knapp of the Kaycee City Council presented an overview of the
Kaycee flood. Total storm precipitation was estimated at 6+ inches of
rain during a 7-hour period, which resulted in a flash flood from the
Murphy Creek drainage. 19 trailers, 22 homes, and 12 of Kaycee’s 15
businesses were damaged or destroyed. Governor Geringer declared the
area a disaster area. Total damage was estimated in the range of 3 to 4
million dollars. The town is coordinating with NRCS, FEMA, and the Army
Corps of Engineers in the development of a flood mitigation plan.
Geochemistry of Coalbed Methane (CBM)
Disposal Ponds (575 kb PDF)
Rich Jackson, University of Wyoming, presented the outline of a
proposed 3-year study of CBM disposal ponds. The goal is to determine
pond water quality by reviewing the chemical and biological data for
indicators of water quality. Water samples will be taken from 20 sites
across 5 watersheds, with 4 water samples (2 from discharge, 2 from
ponds) and 1 sediment sample done at each site. Additionally,
biological samples will be taken, with 4 samples of vegetation and
aquatic insects done at each site. Initial water quality and how it
changes over time will be determined.
The fate of iron, barium, arsenic, and selenium in pond water and
sediment will also be investigated. The effect of CBM water on wetlands
plants and aquatic insects will also be studied. Ultimately, this
research will evaluate chemical and biological changes of CBM discharge
ponds based on watershed properties; predict beneficial uses; and help
manage CBM water resources.
The National Weather Service in the Powder River Basin
Joe Sullivan and Melissa Smith of the National Weather Service (NWS)
presented an overview of their agency. The NWS, which is affiliated
with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, has 123
offices nationwide with 13 river basin centers. The Riverton office
serves this basin. NWS information can be accessed through the NOAA
weather radio, the national website http://www.nws.noaa.gov
http://weather.gov, the local website
by telephone (800)211-1448 or locally (307)857-3898. Of particular
interest on the national website are the Advanced Hydrologic Prediction
Service (AHPS), Hazardous Weather Outlooks, 7 day advance forecasts,
radar images, and climatological data. The Riverton office website
includes local and regional weather information as well as satellite
imagery and warnings.
Joe requested that the public assist the NWS by reporting observed
severe weather conditions, including tornadoes, flooding, large hail,
damaging winds, heavy snow, or dense fog to the Riverton office.
An overview of the August 2002 flash
flood near Kaycee (2514 kb PDF) was also
presented. Between 11:30pm on August 26, 2002 and 1:00am on August 27,
radar and satellite imagery estimated 3 inches of rainfall occurred
along the tributaries of the Middle Fork of the Powder River, 10 miles
from Kaycee. At 1:05 am, the NWS issued a flash flood warning. Rain
continued to fall during the night, with estimates of total
precipitation received at 6.0 to 7.4 inches over a 12 square mile area.
41 homes, 12 businesses, and most buildings in town were damaged at a
loss of $3 million. It should be noted that Murphy Creek, which is
normally a dry creek bed, had an estimated peak discharge of 13,500 cfs.
Mickey Steward, Coalbed Methane Coordination Coalition, indicated that
the CBMCC has revised and refined its goals and objectives because of
the multitude of issues surrounding CBM. The new goals are meant to
minimize problems associated with CBM by focusing on county and
residential issues. Discussion followed.
Mickey presented a variety of reclamation scenarios for CBM wells.
She further discussed “industrial landscaping” and potential
accompanying results. Currently, 20,000 to 30,000 wells have been
permitted, but only a small fraction of that number have been drilled.
Not all of the water associated with these wells can be used for
The meeting adjourned at 8:03 P.M.