There are no changes to the current meeting schedule due to weather conditions.
Welcome to the Northwest Colorado Stewardship (NWCOS) Website!
| Final Version (9/30/05)|| As of January 26, 2006|| As of July 14, 2005|
NWCOS is a community-based entity aimed at improving public lands decision-making by promoting commonly held values and principles.
The Northwest part of Colorado, as illustrated by the map of Colorado to the left.
NWCOS membership is open to anyone. Currently, approximately 140 individuals receive information and 50+ individuals attend meetings on a regular basis. Regular participants include: citizens and political leaders from the area; oil and gas interests; environmental and conservation advocates and organizations; motorcycle and off-highway vehicle interests; ranchers and farmers; BLM representatives; and other state and federal entities. Although most participants live in the surrounding counties, a number of individuals attend meetings from Denver or out of state.
To view a list of people participating in NWCOS, please click here.
To be added to the NWCOS mailing list, please contact the webmaster by clicking here.
Please be sure to include your contact information and the method by which you would like to receive information (mail or email).
The region of Northwest Colorado is composed of private, federal, state, and county lands, and encompasses several towns and communities. Moffat County, Routt County, and Rio Blanco County lie in the northwest corner of the state. The Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Little Snake Field Office oversees a significant portion of Northwest Colorado, including lands that are highly valued by the public for their physical and cultural beauty in the form of petroglyphs, sculpted canyons, and open space as well as the economic benefit resulting from ranching, energy development, and recreation. Other federal agencies with major interests and responsibilities in the region include the U.S. National Park Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Forest Service. In addition, the State of Colorado owns significant holdings in the region.
Because these public lands are of such great concern to the diverse communities in Moffat, Routt, and Rio Blanco Counties, as well as the communities of interest across the State of Colorado and beyond, there has been extensive public interest in the use and management of these lands. For many years this interest has manifested itself through community discussions, lawsuits, legislative requests, and a BLM wilderness reinventory of Vermillion Basin.
In 2002, the Moffat County Commission and Land Use Board proposed an alternative approach to public lands management in the region, and a series of contentious debates between different interests ensued. Eventually, a wide variety of community members, companies, and organizations accepted the invitation to cooperatively and proactively address land management issues in the region. In response, the Northwest Colorado Stewardship (NWCOS) was formed in March of 2003. Through NWCOS, diverse interests are empowered to learn together about public land management and make recommendations to BLM and other agencies on land management through a diversity of approaches.
As of February 2005, NWCOS has undertaken many efforts including:
- Building capacity by organizing or participating in several workshops on fire management, community partnerships, and place-based NEPA.
- Identifying shared priorities and a structure for going forward.
- Designing the details for a habitat restoration program.
- Reaching agreement on operating Protocols, which include having open membership, operating by consensus, approaches for press relations, and the role of BLM and other federal agencies at the NWCOS table.
To view the NWCOS Protocols, please click here.
- Reaching consensus agreement on whether the group should be chartered under FACA. After sharing legal opinions from the oil and gas industry, NGO’s, Moffat County, and BLM, the group decided that The Keystone Center could serve as their organizing entity and it was not necessary to be chartered under FACA. However, the group agreed that NWCOS would operate in a fully open and public fashion for all efforts.
- Providing detailed input to BLM regarding the type of support contractor BLM should hire for this process, who should run the socioeconomic workshop, and the type of data that should be considered in the AMS.
- BLM has offered the public and NWCOS opportunities to review and comment on draft documents that are normally not available publicly. This step helps to build consensus along the way regarding the data that is key to the decision-making.
- Submitting consensus scoping comments to BLM on February 2, 2005. Many NWCOS members submitted individual scoping comments, also. Both the consensus scoping comments and the individual scoping comments can be found by clicking here.
For further information about NWCOS, please click here.
To contact the Webmaster, please click here.
Please note that the documents on this website are .pdf files, and you will need Adobe® Reader® to view them. To download the free software, click here.
This site was last updated on June 13, 2006.