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Mid-Pacific Region
Sacramento, Calif.
Media Contact:
Jeffrey McCracken
916-978-5100

Released On: April 30, 2003

RECLAMATION POSTS NEW TRINITY RIVER FLOW SCHEDULE AND INCREASES RELEASES TO TRINITY RIVER FOR FLOOD CONTROL
Because of the high run-off from recent storms, Reclamation increased flows into the Trinity River at midnight last night to 1,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) for flood control purposes and will ramp up flows to 2,500 cfs by Thursday, May 1. Although not completely full, Trinity Lake will need to maintain space for snowmelt well into the spring.

Also yesterday the Trinity Management Council (TMC) unanimously approved a recommendation from its Restoration Program staff to implement a modified wet year release schedule for 2003 that optimizes the available volume of water (452,600 acre feet) recently authorized by U.S. District Court Judge Oliver Wanger.

At their regularly scheduled meeting on April 22-23, the Trinity Adaptive Management Working Group requested that the TMC consider ways of optimizing this year's flow schedule "to achieve the best effects possible within existing legal and practical constraints." Implementing this release schedule is designed to meet wet water year temperature and habitat objectives that optimize smolt (juvenile salmon and steelhead) growth and survival in late spring and early summer before their outmigration to the ocean. This will enhance survivability of the Trinity River’s 2002 brood year, which was impacted by last fall's die-off in the lower Klamath River.

Trinity River releases were originally scheduled to increase beginning Monday, April 28, ramping up from the winter base level of 300 cfs to 4,500 cfs by Sunday, May 4, and continuing at that level for 5 days. Under the newly approved release schedule, current releases from Lewiston Dam to the Trinity River would have continued at 300 cfs until Friday, May 9, and then ramped up to 2,000 cfs by Wednesday, May 14. The schedule calls for these releases to continue at 2,000 cfs from May 14 to July 9 and then ramp down to the summer base level of 450 cfs by July 21.

The new release schedule is available on line at Reclamation's Central Valley Operations website at www.mp.usbr.gov/cvo/. Any further changes in Trinity River releases due to flood control will also be posted on the website and publicized through media channels.

For additional information, please call Jeffrey McCracken in the Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100, TDD 916-978-5608. You may also contact Tom Patton at CVO at 916-979-2185, TDD 916-979-2183, or Doug Schleusner at Trinity River Restoration Program at 530-623-1800.

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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.