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Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
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Response by Dan Keppen, Klamath Water Users to Herald and News letter by ONRC Jim McCarthy, Ashland regarding our refuges. 5/5/04
His comments about not sharing are ridiculous. Last year, nearly 15,000 acres of farmland were idled, over 50,000 acre-feet of water provided to the water bank via groundwater and idling, and another 30,000 acre-feet of groundwater were pumped outside of the water bank - with no compensation - to help USBR meet lake level requirements.
McCarthy clearly doesn't understand that, when the Project tightens things up from a water use standpoint, the refuges receive less water. He fails to see the true problem we face: the largest "new" demand in the Klamath River basin are the flow targets established in the NOAA Fisheries BO, which is the driving force behind the uncertain water supplies faced by both the Project and the Lower Klamath refuge system. As a result, the federal government has resorted to pumping California and Oregon groundwater to meet a water bank schedule that escalates each year, with no consideration for actual hydrologic conditions.
And on and on.

Dan Keppen
Executive Director of Klamath Water Users Association




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