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Mid-Pacific Region
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Released On: November 25, 2009

Reclamation Awards Contract for the Battle Creek Salmon and Steelhead Restoration Project
Media Contacts:   
Reclamation: Pete Lucero, 916-978-5100
Pacific Gas & Electric Company: Paul Moreno, 530-896-4290
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service: Jim Smith, 530-527-3043 & Erica Szlosek, 916-978-6159
CA Department of Fish & Game: Jordan Traverso, 916-212-7352, & Angela Howe, 916-653-7563
National Marine Fisheries Service: Jim Milbury, 562-980-4006

The Bureau of Reclamation has awarded the second construction contract for the Battle Creek Salmon and Steelhead Restoration Project (Restoration Project).  This contract is for placement of fish ladders and screens on North Battle Creek Feeder and Eagle Canyon Diversion Dams on the North Fork of Battle Creek.  The area is located within 5 miles of Manton, California, in Shasta and Tehama Counties.  The contract was awarded on October 28, 2009, to Syblon Reid in the amount of $10,813,000.00.  Construction is planned to begin in February 2010. 

This CALFED Bay-Delta Program Restoration Project will enable naturally produced salmonids to safely access high-quality spawning grounds, thereby contributing to their population growth and recovery.  The species that will benefit include threatened and endangered Chinook salmon and Central Valley steelhead trout. 

At the same time, the Restoration Project will minimize the loss of renewable energy produced by the Battle Creek Hydroelectric Project owned and operated by Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E).  The Restoration Project will be accomplished through the modification of PG&E's Hydroelectric Project facilities and operations, including instream flow releases.  On August 25, 2009, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) amended PG&E's hydroelectric license approving the facilities and operational changes.

Interactive Pictures of Eagle Canyon spring flows and the Eagle Canyon diversion dam - Click to see a larger version of the pictureIn 1999, Reclamation received $28 million in Federal funds from CALFED for the Restoration Project.  PG&E is contributing to the Restoration Project in the form of forgone energy generation, voluntarily pursuing an amendment to the Hydroelectric Project's FERC license, and transferring certain water rights to the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG).  Despite the reduction in renewable electricity resulting from the restoration effort, PG&E fully supports this habitat restoration project and the changes to its operations that are required to ensure the success of the Restoration Project.  The Packard Foundation, via The Nature Conservancy, is contributing $3 million to the overall Restoration Project for adaptive management.  Specific to this construction contract, Federal funds are being provided by the Iron Mountain Mine Trustee Council; State funds are being provided by DFG and the California Department of Transportation.

Battle Creek offers an extraordinary restoration opportunity because of its geology, hydrology, and habitat suitability for several anadromous species.  The overall Restoration Project will be among the largest cold-water anadromous fish restoration efforts in North America, restoring approximately 42 miles of habitat in Battle Creek and an additional 6 miles of habitat in tributaries of Battle Creek.

Via a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in June 1999, Reclamation, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, DFG, and PG&E initiated work on the Restoration Project. In addition to the MOU partners, the Restoration Project has been developed in collaboration with various resource agencies, including the California Wildlife Conservation Board, and in conjunction with valuable participation from the public, stakeholders and landowners, including the Greater Battle Creek Watershed Working Group and the Battle Creek Watershed Conservancy (http://battle-creek.net/index.htm ). 

The public, stakeholders and landowners have received frequent updates and communication regarding this project throughout its development; as a result, they have been actively involved since the start.  

Please visit the Restoration Project's website at  http://www.usbr.gov/mp/battlecreek/index.html for additional information.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov.