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Great Basin Water Network — May 2020

Our Work Is Not Complete; Donor To Match Up To $15,000 To Finish What We Started

Dear Water Warriors,

By now you have likely heard the good news – we have overwhelmingly won in court against SNWA.

Thank you for the calls, texts, emails and social media posts. Many thought this moment was impossible. But folks like you knew our fight was one worth fighting. Our recent victory completed an unbroken line of seven legal upsets against SNWA in our 31-year battle. That success would not have been possible without you. Please join us in celebrating the decades of work undertaken to stop this project.

So now many are asking us: Is there still work to be done? Should I still donate? Do threats remain?

The answer to all those questions is an unequivocal yes.

We cannot drop the ball. As our tireless attorney Simeon Herskovits says: Our work could be snatched from the jaws of victory if we don’t remain vigilant. Inspired by our court victories, a generous donor reached out last week to both rejoice and express continued support — promising to match all contributions made to GBWN by June 1 or up to $15,000, whatever comes first. Please consider taking advantage of this opportunity by writing us a check or donating with a credit card online via Paypal.

A number of outstanding issues remain:
  • 1989 Water Grab applications in Snake Valley, Railroad Valley, Three Lakes Valley, Tikaboo Valley and Indian Springs remain –– totaling some 190,000 afy per year and threatening places like Great Basin and Death Valley National Parks.
  • There’s lingering uncertainty about the “double set” of SNWA applications that resulted from our 2010 victory in the Nevada Supreme Court.
  • The SNWA’s Right of Way application with the BLM still remains.
  • The SNWA still owns seven ranches in Spring Valley – with more than 30,000 afy of water rights and 900,000 acres of grazing allotments.
  • A stipulated agreement managed by SNWA will continue to publicly muzzle federal agencies and repress rural communities.
  • Threats to indigenous sacred sites like the swamp cedars and communities like Duckwater remain.

Your donation will help ensure that SNWA and the State of Nevada revoke the remaining water applications. Funds will help stop the BLM right of way application from moving forward and guarantee that all parties do more to help protect tribal resources and rural communities. Remember: SNWA is still in position to appropriate 60 billion gallons of water annually in rural Nevada, including Snake Valley — home of Great Basin National Park. Officials in Iron County, Utah, have schemed plans to import Snake Valley water. The Death Valley Flow System could be imperiled by more pumping in Indian Springs, Three Lakes and Tikaboo Valleys.

If GBWN isn’t working to protect the resources that define these places — who else will? There’s no better time than now to reaffirm your commitment to protecting our special places with a donation to GBWN. We are not going to back down now.

In our line of work there’s an old saying: Our victories are temporary while our opponents’ victories last forever. That logic certainly applies in this case. There’s more work to do. And it cannot be done without you. Please donate whatever you can. Our water, our heritage, and our future depend on it.

The Great Basin Water Network was formed to protect the water resources of the Great Basin for current and future residents – human, animal and plant.

Kyle Roerink
Executive Director
Great Basin Water Network

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