Published: May 18, 1997

A conference titled Dams: Water and Power in the New West is set for June 2 through June 4 at the Natural Resources Law Center of the University of Colorado School of Law in Boulder.

The keynote address by Charles F. Wilkinson, “Coming to Grips with Growth in the West: Traditional Communities, Free Rivers and the New Megalopoli,” will be Monday, June 2, at 12:30 p.m. in the Lindsley Memorial Courtroom of the law school. Wilkinson is a noted law professor, writer and authority on Western issues.

The conference will begin by providing historical context for the development of Western water and look at the impact dams have had on the environment and people of the region. It will examine the demographic and economic pressures that are demanding changes in the ways rivers are used and managed.

The conference will feature experts including high-ranking federal officials, environmentalists, industry representatives and legal scholars from throughout the nation addressing such topics as deregulation of the electric utility industry, federal relicensing of hydropower facilities, reoperation of federal facilities to improve environmental protection, divestment of federal facilities and visions for the future of water developments.

The sponsor, the Natural Resources Law Center, has held conferences for the past 17 years on critical and timely environmental law issues of national importance. About 125 people from around the country, primarily the West, are expected to attend this year.

The cost of all events at the three-day conference is $575. For anyone employed by any level of government, federal, state, tribal or local, and for academics or nonprofit groups the fee is $300. Continuing legal education credits are available.

For information contact Kathryn Mutz, conference coordinator, at