Long-Term Conveyance Agreement Completed for Kern National Wildlife Refuge Water Supplies

Media Contact: Pete Lucero, 916-978-5100

For Release: September 27, 2012

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation in partnership with California Department of Water Resources have entered into a new long-term agreement running through the year 2028 for the conveyance of Central Valley Project Improvement Act water supplies for the Kern National Wildlife Refuge located in Kern County. Under this agreement, Reclamation will provide up to 30,500 acre-feet annually for conveyance by the Department of Water Resources.

The DWR will convey the water through the California Aqueduct for diversion by the Buena Vista Water Storage District. The District will continue the conveyance through their facilities for delivery to the boundary of the Kern NWR under a separate agreement with Reclamation.

This long-term agreement will ensure that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff at Kern NWR will meet their annual wildlife habitat management requirements by continuing to receive reliable water deliveries. These water supplies benefit a wide range of wildlife, supporting populations of migrating shorebirds and providing critical habitat for the advent of the first wintering waterfowl, northern pintails, which typically arrive in the San Joaquin Valley in mid-August. The water supplies will create sufficient flooded habitat to support approximately 100,000 ducks each winter, as well as high quality habitat in the spring for waterfowl and nesting colonial waterbirds such as the great blue heron and the white-faced ibis.

For additional information on the agreement, please contact Sonya Nechanicky, Bureau of Reclamation at 916-978-5559 (TTY 916-978-5608).

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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 and follow us on Twitter @USBR.