Dams create a number of issues for the overall health of a watershed. One of the primary issues is that they modify the volume (discharge) and timing of when and how water flows in the portion of the river downstream. Dams trap and store water in the wet periods of time, and then release additional water during the dry, hot periods of time to meet human need.
SYRCL and Friends of the River recently sent a letter to the National Marine Fisheries Service to compel the agency to craft a watershed-wide solution to save the threatened species native to the Yuba Watershed, including Spring-run Chinook salmon, steelhead trout, and green sturgeon. The letter demands a new biological opinion, presenting compelling evidence that harm caused by the Corps’ dams, compounded by increased harm from climate change, is responsible for the dramatic decrease in Yuba River fish populations. Details
Despite our best efforts, the salmon have had two of the worst years on record. Salmon don’t appear to take notice of plans and funding requests. They continue to struggle to survive in the aftermath of the mining and dam building eras, maximizing their ability to thrive in habitat that slowly recovers. Details
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released a draft Feasibility Report & Environmental Assessment for the Yuba River. This interim study, which is now out for public review and comment (through February 23), presents a variety of actions and alternatives for restoring the Yuba River. Yet, in its suite of suggestions, it discounts the removal of Englebright and Daguerre Point Dams as fish passage options for the Yuba. Details