As human pressures on land intensify, land-use decisions in response to the new demands become increasingly critical. Thus, the fate of the little-known Running Creek Watershed assumes a broad importance. Running Creek Watershed is a 150-kilometer strip of land lying just east of the rapidly expanding urban corridor of Colorado's front range. The land in the watershed is devoted primarily to the production of food, and includes pasture, dry crop, and irrigated crop operations. Two sources of demand suggest dramatic future changes in this land-use pattern: advancing urbanization, and energy demands for the coal available in a large deposit 25 kilometers east of Denver. In this volume Timothy Tregarthen presents a synthesis of discussions and papers presented at a 1976 conference that focused on the trade-offs implicit in the land-use alternatives of food production, urbanization, and energy development. Sponsored by the Wright-Ingraham Institute, the conference brought together a wide range of scientists, humanists, public officials, representatives of industrial and agricultural organizations, and interested citizens concerned not only about this important regional problem, but about the broader implications of competing land-use needs. Conference participants examined factors important to changes in land use, giving particular attention to the natural, economic, political, and value systems at work on the watershed in terms of how these systems affect and will be affected by changing land-use patterns.