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Report: Klamath dam removal will help fish, farms

Sacramento Bee 1/24/12

A draft report released Tuesday by the U.S. Interior Department says removing four hydroelectric dams in the Klamath Basin will restore salmon and sustain irrigation for farmers in Southern Oregon and Northern California.

The findings support a bill introduced by Oregon Democrat Sen. Jeff Merkley and California Democrat Rep. Mike Thompson that would authorize the Interior Department to decide whether to remove the Klamath River dams.

The report repeats findings from September, and says dam removal will create fishing jobs, reduce disease among salmon and improve water quality in some areas.

The report pins the cost of dam removal at $291 million in 2020 dollars.

Pulling down the dams would increase the stretch of the 100-year floodplain, but the report says only six residences would be affected.

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Showing 9 comments

  • mediocre
    Don't spend one cent on those dams until gill netting is outlawed, and enforced, on the river.  And, it would be good to stop all gill netting on the North American Continent.  Why try to produce more fish if they will all be netted?  Has anyone ever tried to count all of the gill nets on the Klamath River and its tributaries?  You can buy truck loads of netted salmon, all in violation of the original treatie.
  • madronesac
    There is little power or irrigation purpose served by these dams.  They have messed up the anadramous salmon range and have produced a bonanza of toxic algae behind the dams.

    The stickler is that large farmers often farming on public land in the Upper Klamath Basin allot themselves too much water under the allotment scheme which some view as integral to the measure.

    I say take down the four major Klamath River dams as soon as possible while properly caring for the toxic algae and silt -- and work toward stream restoration and forest recovery to have a thriving fishing economy once again.
  • LAReader99
    It's 160MW of clean renewable power.  Thats over $100M worth ANNUALLY of renewable power.  What is wrong with these morons?
  • sacbee2209
    Yes, get rid of clean hydro power. Tax us all to pay for it. 

    What idiots...and they wonder why there are no jobs.
  • Mic01
    Heck the state won't need the water storage capacity, after all, everyone can conserve enough to supply any future state population growth!  Uh huh.......
  • yeehaa
    Pull the dams increase the cost of electricity. Fine! Who is going to monitor tribal fishing to make sure that they don't over fish and sell the salmon on the black market in SF? They already do and aren't being stopped.
  • Ryan Waller
    Went fishing up there a year ago ...river looked great! ...If they want to restore Salmon maybe they should look at the tribal fishing ..........
  • AskFrank2012
    Oops. I know some people that bought time shares there or near there. Already a place just to pass, very retro if you decide to check out Klamanth Falls.

    Btw, no Falls can be found...I wonder why the name?
  • This closed-door contrived "agreement" by environmental groups, federal agencies, tribes, and a couple farmer considerably downsizes agriculture, controls our surface and groundwater by non-elected groups, plants endangered fish into our warm shallow lake, gives a tribe land they previously sold, gives away our deeded water rights, puts 20 MILLION TONS of sediment into the river, obliterating any memory of life in the river, not to mention flood control. It will take billions $ to somehow, someday, scoop out the sediment and try to "wild" the river. These same environmental groups creating this "agreement" are the same ones suing Siskiyou folks for water quality, irrigation, and they shut down suction dredge mining, and previously logging with the owl, causing rampant fires to burn up the critters. At least you won't need to worry about food production since Obama's food czar was the Monsanto attorney.


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