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KVNF Regional Newscast: July 12, 2022

The Colorado Water Plan was originally passed in 2015, and was initially an effort by then-Governor John Hickenlooper.
Alex Hager
The Colorado Water Plan was originally passed in 2015, and was initially an effort by then-Governor John Hickenlooper.

A Go Fund Me campaign for longtime KVNF DJ Lea Love, called Lea’s Recovery Fund, has already raised over 15,000 dollars so far this week. Lea had surgery for brain tumors in Denver, according to her family, and the funds raised will reportedly help her partner Clem care for Lea’s four children as their mom faces a potentially long recovery.

The Center for Mental Health announced last week the completion of their merger with Axis Health Systems. CMH has locations in Montrose, Delta, Gunnison, Hinsdale, San Miguel, and Ouray counties. Axis serves La Plata, San Juan, Dolores, Archuleta, and Montezuma counties. Post-merger, Axis now has more than 400 staff serving over 18,000 people. The nonprofit remains headquartered in Durango.

Colorado Sun reporter Mark Jaffe has followed up on the secretive new solar farms along U.S. 50 just within Montrose County north of Olathe. The mysterious development at the old Louisiana Pacific lumber mill is in fact a cryptocurrency mine. The ten-megawatt solar operation is connected to what Aspen Creek Digital calls a quote high performance bitcoin mining center. Jaffe reports last year China banned cryptocurrency mining and that led to a scramble to find new locations, particularly in rural areas of the U.S. with access to cheap power. China was previously home to about three quarters of the world’s crypto mines, which use specialized computers to keep track of bitcoin calculations and require heavy duty power supplies. The Sun reports bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency, lost 70 percent of its value by the end of June from its November 2021 peak.

Water shortages are likely to intensify in Colorado as temperatures get warmer due to climate change. KUNC’s Luke Runyon reports, that is one finding in a recent update to the state’s water plan.

SPOT (:40)

Delta County Commissioners could entertain a second opportunity to approve a nearly 400-acre solar project east of Delta. The original application, twice approved by the county’s planning commission, was denied by the board of county commissioners on a 2 to 1 vote in March, however a new application has been submitted by DMEA. KVNF freelance reporter Lisa Young has the details ahead of tomorrow’s Delta County planning commission meeting.

FEATURE (5:08)

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Gavin Dahl is a writer and producer with a passion for community media. He worked for KVNF from July 2020 to July 2022. He won awards and recognition for his KVNF reporting from the Colorado Broadcasters Association and Society of Professional Journalists. His writing has been published by The Montrose Press, The Sopris Sun, Boulder Weekly, Raw Story, Radio Survivor, Boise Weekly, and The Austin American-Statesman. He graduated from The Evergreen State College with a BA in media production and community organizing.
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