Final Klamath Dam Removal Decision on Horizon while Irrigators Test Water Regulators’ Resolve
It was a busy week for regulatory agencies on the Klamath.
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) staff released the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) on Klamath dam removal. The FEIS sums up the pros and cons associated with dam removal, and in this case, makes a strong case for approving dam removal plans; the Commission will review the FEIS and make a final decision later this year.
Early last week, the Klamath Irrigation District (KID) made headlines when they openly defied new federal orders to cease diversions from Upper Klamath Lake. The Bureau of Reclamation responded by saying that if the diversions continued, it would threaten the district's ability to claim federal drought relief funding. The diversions to the A Canal were turned off shortly after.
Meanwhile, in California, ranchers in the Shasta Valley suddenly defied state orders and began diverting surface water from the Shasta River, instantly dropping water levels in the river by 40%. Local Tribes demanded action from the state, which promptly told ranchers to halt diversions or face fines. Those diversions have since ceased, and the river has returned to state mandated flows to protect fish.
Explore the articles below to learn more.