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Draft Environmental Assessment Implementation of Klamath Project Operating Procedures 2020-2023, Klamath Project, Oregon/California, Interior Region 10 California Great Basin, CGB-EA-2020-018


Draft at https://www.usbr.gov/mp/nepa/nepa_project_details.php?Project_ID=42926


To: klamathbasin@usbr.gov  

from Rex Cozzalio, Hornbrook, CA




Resubmitted due to Bureau error 4/14/2020


Based upon prior BOR Biological Opinion submitted comments, which to date have never yet been acknowledged, addressed, or even published within essentially unaltered ‘final decision’ documents, it has become highly questionable that non special interest submissions are even read, much less considered.  It is also disconcerting that of all the resident and non-resident ‘stakeholders’ weighing in on the ‘decisions’, it is those most vested, experienced, and directly impacted who are allowed the least voice or input.  Nevertheless, in consideration of all those, the following comments are being submitted:


BOR states “During the three-year interim period, the agencies will collect, review, and analyze additional scientific information, as well as work with the Tribes, key stakeholders, and other agencies to better inform the longer-term ESA consultation and the transition to the Operations Plan resulting from that consultation.”, and further;

“Reclamation has prepared this EA to determine whether implementing the Interim Plan and acquisition of Project water supplies as described in Section 2 may significantly affect the quality of the human environment.” (BOR Draft Section 1)

Under this 'Plan', the CURRENT empirical data emerging from the Interim Klamath Monitoring Agreement that is now DEFINITIVELY REFUTING the 'purposes' for increased water confiscation is knowingly and effectively obfuscated until AFTER dams and deep water lake environmental benefits are destroyed in pursuit of supporting KHSA 'rewilding' at any cost.  In doing so, BOR intentionally seeks to delay formal recognition and incorporation of those currently empirically evidenced benefits until AFTER policy based ‘rewilding’ Hydro-Project destruction, at which point those lost benefits are intentionally rendered no longer recoverable and thereby ‘officially’ irrelevant. 


IF the current data regarding failed UKL 'restored' sucker 'projections' and Klamath River pulse flow certomyxa shasta rebound, sentinel fish studies, marginal polychaete disruption, Hydro-Project IMPROVED downstream water quality conditions, and the now evidenced potential INCREASED risk from instream microcystis with dams destroyed were 'considered' here, MUCH of which has ALREADY been referenced in prior Bi-Op submissions, they would CONTRADICT the current politically and judicially motivated need for 'interim' further confiscation of Project water.  As it stands, by 'deferring' incorporation of the current data, BOR's 'alternative' IGNORES and NEGATES the best and most effective evidenced empirical science in favor of already once acknowledged defective constructed 'modeled' hypothesis and their resultant judicial decrees.  In doing so, BOR abrogates its duty to the best public interest, eliminates implementation of far more beneficial environmental alternatives, and creates UNDUE HARDSHIP on the cumulative severely impacted 'Human Environment' BOR is obligated to protect.

Typical with BOR past actions displaying bias in concert with Hydroelectric Project destruction and consistent with all 'sister Agency' previous KHSA signatories’ report 'introductions', BOR here (1.4.2) convolutes the actual history of the KHSA, LEAVING OUT critical parts.  The 2010 KHSA and the 2016 'amended' KHSA are in fact TWO COMPLETELY DIFFERENT 'agreements', between different parties under completely altered terms.  Under the 'new' KHSA, relatively NONE of the original restoration or mitigations previously associated with the 'intrinsically tied' KBRA will occur, NO funding  is assured, and the fabricated original conditionally limited EIR projected outcomes are NO LONGER APPLICABLE. 

BOR further stating that License Transfer was "partially approved" displays either a complete lack of knowledge or a constructed intent to deceive the public and/or frame a false 'paper trail' official record.  In assigning spilt Project numbers to even allow addressing the application, PacifiCorp specifically REQUESTED that the designations NOT be made permanent until AFTER any such 'Transfer' is approved, which as of the date of this document HAS NOT OCCURRED.

BOR is fully aware that the quoted KRRC shell corporation holds itself harmless from liability for damages caused as its own defined condition, and has not yet even been approved as a legal principle in the FERC process.  Extracting the KRRC quote out of context… 'followed by environmental restoration', implying that it is somehow analogous to the prior KBRA requirements, is irresponsible and inaccurate, suggesting ‘restoration’ requirements which DO NOT EXIST under the current KHSA/KRRC.  KRRC has no funds, obligation, or stated intentions to execute extensive 'restoration' or 'mitigations' for damages, and FERC, which BOR refers to as the lead Agency, holds itself harmless under the Federal Powers Act, leaving the vast majority of sustained damages to others and the environment unprotected and unmitigated.

By inaccurately portraying 'history', BOR in fact intentionally distorts public ability to reach a rational conclusion of outcome, inferring that 'mitigations', 'restoration', and accountability for damages are available under 'agreement' terms which in reality DO NOT EXIST, thereby manufacturing erroneous information as the 'justification' for a predetermined 'draft' decision.


In Section 2.1, BOR utilizes many subjective terms as a basis for its decisions, such as ‘would generally be expected', 'deemed important', ‘thought to provide', and 'potentially'.  Continued opinion of 'similar impacts' regarding 20,000 acre feet previously added to that ALREADY taken from Project irrigators in the prior B.O. 'revisions' in which BOR ALREADY IGNORED the MAJOR 'human impacts’ to Project irrigators, it appears easy for BOR’s unaccountable and unsupported leap to 'relatively similar effects' regarding the loss of 3,000 more acre feet.  In undeniably deceptive maneuvering, the 2.1 statement aimed at Project irrigators is that ‘only’ an ‘additional’ 3,000 acre feet will come from irrigators, whereas 17,000 is from UKL.  However, buried in subsequent sections is the REALITY of where the water will ACTUALLY be deducted.  In ANY given year proposed INCREASED amounts will be deducted from available stored water allocations, the likelihood of insufficient allocated water INCREASES.  Given an inability in those years to meet also statistically challenged ‘minimum’ lake levels, and subsequent to dams’ destruction, it is the IRRIGATORS who will carry the entire additional burden.

According to current above described studies, and from Bi.Op. referenced contracted researchers’ own STATEMENTS, there is now a presumption of CONTINUING, if not INCREASED demanded REQUIRED pulse flows AFTER dams are destroyed.  In BOR’s ‘alternative’ implementation and REFUSAL to address current data, BOR irresponsibly paints an ERRONEOUS scenario that does NOT conform to a supportable projected realistic present or future outcome.

Clearly NOT in the 'public interest', by BOR and 'Services' extending this revised Bi.Op. and delaying the review and incorporation of current science offering potentially far greater beneficial resource solutions, rather than locking this special interest 'collaborative' 'alternative operation' in place until AFTER dams destruction, in fact serves THEMSELVES and their 'collaborative' benefit, NOT the public's or the environment.


In 2.2.5, prior 'forced flushes' have ALREADY been shown minimally effective in disease reduction and typically creating a REBOUND disease effect, and yet by NOT considering recent data, THOSE WASTED FLOWS CONTINUE to the detriment of ALL ‘sustainable’ human and environmental aspects.

Meanwhile, BOR artificial floods prescribing 'environmental' 'ramp downs' STILL FAIL to recognize the 1964 court ordered MANDATED MAXIMUM 'ramping up' limitations, risking downstream life and safety, which BOR has REPEATEDLY VIOLATED by as much as 300% in initiating EXCEEDENCE of the 250 cfs per HOUR MAXIMUM rate of increase ordered at Iron Gate.  Repeated communications with BOR have fallen on deaf ears.  Those mandates SHOULD BE INCORPORATED HERE to insure coordinated compliance.


Comment Resubmission:

If ever there was clear confirmation of a predetermined outcome of regional oppression, this qualifies!

Given only 10 days (or what is left once people ACTUALLY become aware of the release) to respond to 179 pages and additionally referencing hundreds more in the prior Biological Opinions, rather than replying ANY DIRECT NOTICE to submitters concerning the ‘incorrect’ provided BOR posted email address, the submitter has only JUST NOW received awareness through OUTSIDE contacts on the LAST DAY of ALLOWED refiling. 

Predetermined decision is CONFIRMED by the ironic and ‘inconvenient’ fact that IMPLEMENTATION of that BI. Op. is ALREADY beginning TODAY with the FORCED now empirically data contradicted WASTING of water down the Klamath, data which the ‘revised’ Biological Opinion INTENTIONALLY ‘postpones’ consideration of by ‘collaborator agreement’ until AFTER the Klamath dams and SAME currently data evidenced deep water environmental IMPROVEMENTS are DESTROYED!

So much for this paper trail farce of ‘inclusion’ in carrying out a currently empirical data contradicted predefined policy and special interest driven agenda of imposed regional attrition.


Rex Cozzalio



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