Judge Tosses Water Agreement

A federal judge has thrown out a controversial water agreement, saying the plan would damage Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park near Montrose.

In the original agreement with the state, the federal government gave up senior water rights dating to the park's creation in 1933. Environmental groups sued the government, saying the 300 cubic foot per second minimum flow set in the agreement would damage the ecology of the river.

The judge's ruling means that the state and feds will have to sit down and hammer out another agreement for the Gunnison River, whose water has already been over–allocated for agriculture and development.