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PRESS RELEASE: SCWUA Motion to intervene with FERC in Klamath Hydroelectric Project transfer

Siskiyou County Water Users Association
Dated Oct 30, 2017
Yreka, CA.

Richard Marshall, President of the Siskiyou County Water Users Association (SCWUA) announced today that the Association has filed a Motion to Intervene, on Friday with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in the matter of the Application for License Amendment and Partial Transfer of PacifiCorp and the Klamath River Renewal Corporation of the Klamath Hydroelectric Project.  SCWUA has filed the request to deny the transfer which is proposed to the FERC in the Project 2082-062.

The request was filed on behalf of the Water Users by noted attorney James Buchal of Portland Oregon author of “The Great Salmon Hoax”.  Mr. Buchal is licensed to practice law in both States of California and Oregon. 

The Water Users who effectively engineered the passage of ” Measure G” in a General Election in Siskiyou County to retain the Salmon River Hydro facilities represent the majority of the Siskiyou County voters desire to keep the clean hydro power facilities in place.  They advocate that the science that has been used to support dam removal is biased and misleading, and that the Klamath River needs to be addressed in a new NEPA EIR/EIS that looks at the entire seven reaches of the Klamath River as well as the impacts of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and the estuary at the mouth of the River.  The water users have done considerable research and produced a definitive document entitled “Alternatives to Dam Removal”.  They have engineered a voluntary anadromous fish passage around Iron Gate Dam known locally as the “Shasta Fish Tunnel”.  The Department of Interior summarily dismissed this option citing that the goal was to remove the dams not to keep them.  In addition the previous EIR never examined fully the economic impacts on Siskiyou County or other counties fronting the Klamath River and the impact that could result from destruction of the aquatic bio system connected to the Klamath.  This could include among others the flora and fauna along the river as well as the loss of the aquatic habitat that has established itself along the sides of the dam reservoirs.  This would also include the short nose sucker who is prevalent in the Copco Lake reservoirs.

The only EIR/EIS prepared by the DOI was so slanted that the “scientific integrity” officer Dr. Paul Houser refused to sign off on a statement by the DOI which cost him his position there.  Dr. Houser became a “whistleblower” protecting him from further recrimination.  The then Secretary of the Interior, Mr. Salazar had made a statement at a meeting in San Francisco prior to the completion of the EIR/EIS in which he indicated that the “dams were coming out”.

The DOI was also summarily censored by Congress in regard to the orchestrated attempt at a “national survey” to support the dam removal process.  After spending nearly $500,000 dollars of tax payer funds with an independent contractor to “engineer” the questions to the survey and nearly eighteen months in the making the DOI sent out nearly 10,000 questionnaires to disparate areas of the country in order to achieve very meager results with about a 10% return.  The DOI in desperation offered $20.00 to respondents to try to achieve “positive” results.

The fact of the matter is that the proposed “largest dam removal project in the history of the nation” is not about the fish.  No scientific study exists that we are aware of to support that removing the dams will result in more Salmon or even that the Salmon will travel to up River to warm water to lay their eggs.  Salmon are a cold water fish and the Klamath is an upside down temperature gradient River with the warmest waters in the area behind the current hydro dams.   These hydro facilities besides creating clean power provide a very important function in controlling “in stream flow” which is used particularly in the summer months to provide water to the Salmon and to the fish hatchery which is connected to Iron Gate Dam.  What dam removal is about is money and power.  Ultimately the environmentalists behind the effort will admit after dam removal that the “experiment” failed leaving them no choice but to demand that the ”in stream flow” in the Klamath needs to be supplemented most likely from the Shasta and Scott River Valleys and their underground aquifers.




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