Aug 222014
 
BuRec is going to release more water to aid returning adult Chinook salmon, the agency announced today. Press release below links to coverage of the decision.
Reclamation News Release Header

Reclamation to Release Additional Water
to Supplement Flows in the Lower Klamath River

Water release from Trinity Reservoir will begin Saturday, Aug. 23, at 7 a.m.;
Public urged to take safety precautions on or near the river while flows are high

REDDING, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation will release additional water from Trinity Reservoir to supplement flows in the lower Klamath River to help protect the returning run of adult Chinook salmon. The public is urged to take all necessary precautions on or near the river while flows are high during this period.

“We have determined that unprecedented conditions over the past few weeks in the lower Klamath River require us to take emergency measures to help reduce the potential for a large-scale fish die-off,” said Mid-Pacific Regional Director David Murillo. “This decision was made based on science and after consultation with Tribes, water and power users, federal and state fish regulatory agencies, and others.”

Several recent factors prevalent in the lower Klamath River are the basis for the decision to provide emergency augmentation flows. Reclamation will increase releases from Lewiston Dam beginning at 7 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23, from approximately 450 cubic feet per second to approximately 950 cfs to achieve a flow rate of 2,500 cfs in the lower Klamath River.

At 7 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 25, releases from Lewiston Dam will begin increasing to approximately 2,450 cfs to achieve a flow rate of approximately 4,000 cfs in the lower Klamath River. This release from Lewiston Dam will be maintained for approximately 24 hours before returning to approximately 950 cfs and will be regulated at approximately that level as necessary to maintain lower Klamath River flows at 2,500 cfs until approximately Sunday, Sept. 14. River and fishery conditions will be continuously monitored, and those conditions will determine the duration.

“We fully recognize that during this prolonged severe drought, every acre-foot of water is extremely valuable, and we are making every effort to conserve water released for fish health purposes to reduce hardships wherever possible,” added Murillo.

Reclamation will continue to work with NOAA Fisheries and other federal agencies to comply with applicable provisions of the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.

# # #
Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov.

 

Aug 222014
 

The Fish and Wildlife Service violated the ESA when it granted an incidental take permit to the state of Montana that would have resulted in the loss of core habitat for the threatened grizzly bear, a federal judge has ruled (Friends of the Wild Swan v. S.M.R. Jewell, 13-61-M-DWM, D. Mont.). U.S. District Judge Donald [...]

Aug 152014
 

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals has turned down petitions seeking review of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s decision to allow construction of a compressor station in Minisink, N.Y. (Minisink Residents for Environmental Preservation and Safety v. FERC, 12-1481). Essentially, the court said it did not have the authority to second-guess FERC, which the court [...]

Wolverine listing proposal withdrawn

 Posted by on August 12, 2014
Aug 122014
 
Wolverine listing proposal withdrawn

The Fish and Wildlife Service has announced that it is withdrawing its proposal to list the wolverine as threatened. Links follow. Audio of teleconference FWS press release (and pasted below) Center for Biological Diversity Earthjustice Defenders of Wildlife Coverage: Greenwire | Denver Post | Associated Press August 12, 2014 Contact: Gavin Shire, 703-346-9123, gavin_shire@fws.gov Service [...]

Jul 302014
 

In a decision issued today, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals determined that a jurisdictional determination by the Army Corps of Engineers was not a final agency action and was thus not judicially reviewable (Belle Company v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 13-30262). The court affirmed a district court judge’s decision that said the court [...]

Jul 292014
 

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game says it won’t kill wolves in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness on the Payette National Forest. Western Watersheds Project, which has sued IDFG over its plans, announced the development today. Jeff Gould, chief of the department’s wildlife bureau, made the commitment in a declaration filed in [...]

Jul 282014
 

Under the terms of a legal settlement, the Fish and Wildlife Service said it would analyze the effects on listed species of five widely used pesticides, the Center for Biological Diversity announced. The settlement amends a previous settlement requiring FWS to complete, by November 2015, a Section 7 consultation on the impact of seven pesticides on [...]

Jul 282014
 
Bearded seal listing vacated by federal judge in Alaska

The National Marine Fisheries Service looked too far into the future when it listed the Beringia Distinct Population Segment of the bearded seal as threatened, a federal judge decided July 25 (Alaska Oil and Gas Ass’n v. Pritzker, 13-18-RRB, D. Alaska). In a decision that quoted extensively from the Dec. 28, 2012, listing rule, U.S. District [...]

Jul 232014
 
NAS report recommends national coastal risk assessment

A new report from the National Research Council of the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering calls for a national coastal risk assessment in order “to identify coastal areas that face the greatest threats and are high priorities for risk-reduction efforts.” (report page with links) “There is a misalignment of risk, reward, resources, and responsibility related [...]

Jul 212014
 

EPA is proposing restrictions on the Pebble mine in Alaska to protect the Bristol Bay watershed, a development that The Pebble Partnership said was tantamount to a denial of due process. “While today’s announcement from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 10 is only a proposal at this time, we are pleased to note [...]