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9th Circuit Court of Appeals court orders more flows down Trinity
Published April 27, 2004
It's going to be a wet summer on the Trinity
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation had planned to
release about 453,000 acre-feet of water from
reservoirs, but the appeals court ordered an
increase to more than 650,000 acre-feet.
Since 2000 the Hoopa Valley Tribe and Yurok Tribe
have been battling irrigation districts, municipal
water districts and a power company in court for
water. While the case has been in court, flows on
the river have been set by U.S. District Judge
Wanger had determined this year would be
classified as a "dry year," with the river getting
an allocation of about 453,000 acre-feet. But the
appeals court said the river should be operated as
a "normal year" this summer, said Jeff McCracken,
spokesman for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.
The 200,000 acre-feet needed to provide the higher
river flows will come from water already stored in
the Trinity Reservoir system.
The Central Valley Project provides 7 million
acre-feet to about 20,000 farms that together
irrigate about 3 million acres, McCracken said.
About 800,000 acre-feet of the water comes from
While the case, which is the latest in a string of
lawsuits going back to 1984, has been in court the
Bureau hasn't been able to follow the Trinity flow
plan it adopted in December 2000.
Two public hearings, one in Redding and one in
Hoopa, Calif., have been scheduled for early June
to get oral and written comments on the draft
On the Net: www.usbr.gov/mp/ncao
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