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Latest Water Level drop at Copco

by Robert Davis 5/14/12 for KBC News,

Good Evening Just wanted to bring you up to date on my latest info on the drop in water level at Copco .

NMFS requested a higher than normal water flow out of Irongate, above 3000 cfs. Flows provided from Klamath Lake were about 2750 cfs. That left a shortage to be made up. A representative from BOR (Reclamation) stated he would have provided higher flow if it had been requested.

The shortage was made up from Copco Lake resulting in a drop in lake level of about 7 feet. This exposed shoreline that had been the shallows for spawning . but now became bare , hot shoreline. This is not normal practice , and when it happened once before , it was attributed to error by inexperienced operator. The drop occurred 5/10 and it has stopped further loss but has not recovered any as of 5/14 evening report. On 5/12 PP&L reported that it was expected the lake level would recover by 5/16 . No update or progress is reported as of 5/14

The request for excessive flows is required by NMFS to comply with the 2010 Biological Opinion. This will provide overflow of the banks to flood the bank area and give small fish protective cover out of the main stream.

It is evident there was no monitoring of the process to assure any request for change would not cause damage or hardship for the other sections of the project. The weekend interfered with a timely correction of the various operations.

Hereafter coordination between the parties involved would provide a safety net to protect everything from harm by the changes that are requested.

Bob Davis Copco Lake.

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