When: January 14, 2007
Where: Orpheum Theater, 203 W. Adams St., Phoenix, 85003
Details: Produced for public broadcast by 5-time Emmy Award-Winner Paul Bockhorst and narrated by Cheers! actor Ted Danson, the film tells how Arizona Public Service (APS) and environmental advocates overcame the odds to restore beautiful Fossil Creek to the people of Arizona. Two years in the making, the film will be distributed to PBS stations nationally on February 3, 2007.
The Arizona Wilderness Coalition is helping to sponsor this event. Admission is free to AWC members! Just mention you are a member when you call to reserve your tickets with the theater.
The public will have the chance to speak to the people involved in this historic decision and view the film for the first time in its entirety at the World Premiere. Screenings are at 4:00 and 7:00 pm with a social celebration from 6:00-7:00. Tickets are available through the Orpheum Box Office (602-262-7272); $10 for general admission and free to members of the Arizona Riparian Council, American Rivers, The Center for Biological Diversity, The Nature Conservancy of AZ, APS employees, the Arizona Wilderness Coalition, Sierra Club, The Yavapai-Apache Nation, Audubon Society, Friends of Arizona Rivers, and members of KAET Channel Eight.
Background: In an age of increasing energy needs, what would cause one of Arizona’s largest electric companies to voluntarily remove one of its power-generating dams? After 100 years of water diversion, a host of partners from environmental advocacy groups, APS, the Yavapai-Apache Nation, resource agency biologists, and NAU scientists gathered to celebrate the return of full flow to Fossil Creek. The amazing part of this achievement? Despite tension and conflicting interests, APS and dam-removal advocates reached the agreement without court involvement, in what has become an unprecedented display of democracy in action.
In explaining his decision to support decommissioning of the Fossil Creek hydroelectric facility, William Post, Chairman of APS, says, “As we looked at the opportunity to give the residents of the state of Arizona a perennial stream in the desert… there is no option to that. We can find other ways to generate electricity. We cannot find other perennial streams in the desert.”
In July, the Arizona Wilderness Coalition and American Rivers applauded Senator John McCain (R) and Congressman Rick Renzi (R) for sponsoring legislation in Congress to protect Fossil Creek as a Wild and Scenic River, a federal designation which would provide special protections for the creek's outstanding wildlife, plant, and recreational values. Read more about the designation here.