Faced with drought and plunging profits, Colorado farmers are under growing financial pressure to hawk their land to developers. Between 1993 and 2001, about 1.5 million acres of farmland in the state were put on the market and developed; 300,000 of the acres were sold in 2001 as a drought began to take hold. State officials are scrambling to come up with solutions that will slow the loss of agricultural lands. Trouble is, some of the solutions — including more dams and logging to increase water resources for farmers — won’t be to the liking of environmentalists. So far, water conservation is taking a backseat to efforts to expand water infrastructure in the state.
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