Reclamation News Releases News Releases from the Bureau of Reclamation Yakima Project “Flip-Flop” Operations Underway
2016-08-26 10:46:00.0 YAKIMA, Washington - The Bureau of Reclamation announced that it will begin the annual “flip-flop” operation in the Yakima Basin by gradually reducing flows out of Cle Elum Reservoir in the upper Yakima River basin and increasing flows from Rimrock Reservoir affecting flows in the Tieton and Naches Rivers. <P> The purpose of the “flip-flop” operation is to achieve and maintain relatively low flows in the upper Yakima, Cle Elum, and Bumping rivers where the spring Chinook salmon spawn. These lower flows are closer to the natural flow conditions and are therefore more helpful to successful spawning and incubation of the salmon eggs. This operation also reduces impacts on irrigation water supply by allowing for lower flow releases throughout the winter to improve reservoir storage for the coming season. <P> As part of the process, on or about September 6, Reclamation will begin to divert water down the Kittitas Reclamation District’s Spillway 1146 into the Yakima River near Thorp. Reclamation will install buoys that will be in place from Sept. 6 until about Oct. 21. Recreationists are strongly advised, for their safety and well-being, to portage around the buoys and to stay out of the dangerously turbulent flows. <P> “Those who are enjoying the river should definitely avoid the dangerous turbulent water in the area where the spillway water pours into the river,” said Chuck Garner, Yakima Project River Operations supervisor. <P> Flows out of Cle Elum Reservoir have been gradually decreasing since Aug. 20 from a high of 2,870 cfs and will continue to decline to a low of about 220 cfs in mid-September. Flows from Rimrock Reservoir are expected to be in the 900 to 1,200 cfs range by Sept. 1 and increase to between 2,000 and 2,500 cfs by mid to late September depending on irrigation demands and weather conditions. <P> Streamflow changes will occur gradually during the Labor Day holiday weekend. Streamflow information can be obtained by calling (509) 575-5854 or on Reclamation’s website at: <P> Reclamation to Release Additional Water from Trinity Reservoir to Supplement Flows in the Lower Klamath River; Environmental Documents Released
2016-08-24 17:04:00.0 SHASTA LAKE, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation will release additional water from Trinity Reservoir for the lower Klamath River to help protect returning adult fall run Chinook salmon from a disease outbreak and mortality. Supplemental flows from Lewiston Dam will commence on August 25 and extend into late September. <P> On August 2, Reclamation released a Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) for the plan to use water from Trinity Reservoir for the supplemental flows. The Draft EA also analyzed using a potential emergency volume, if needed, to avoid a significant die-off of adult salmon. Real-time monitoring and adaptive management will help guide implementation of supplemental flow releases. <P> Releases from Lewiston Dam will be adjusted to target 2,800 cubic feet per second (cfs) in the lower Klamath River starting August 25. To meet this target, releases from Lewiston Dam will increase from 450 cfs up to 1,300 cfs before dropping to 450 cfs in late September. Additional information will be provided if higher peak flows are needed in early-to-mid-September as part of the preventive action. <P> Flows from Lewiston could be raised as high as 3,500 cfs for up to five days if real-time monitoring information suggests a need for additional supplemental flows as an emergency response. <P> Over the next several weeks, releases could increase as quickly as 250 cfs every two hours, and flow reductions could drop as quickly as 100 cfs every four hours. The public is urged to take all necessary precautions on or near the river while flows are high. <P> The Final EA and Finding of No Significant Impact are available at <a href="" target="_blank"> </a> . If you encounter problems accessing the documents online, please call 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or email <a href=""></a>. <P> For additional information, please contact Paul Zedonis, Supervisory Natural Resource Specialist, at 530-276-2047. <P> Reclamation Releases Final Environmental Documents for Temporary Change in Water Quality Requirements for Groundwater Introduced into Upper Portion of the Delta-Mendota Canal
2016-08-24 16:24:00.0 FRESNO, Calif. - The Bureau of Reclamation has released the final environmental documents for the approval of a temporary change in the maximum acceptable concentration of selenium for groundwater pumped into the upper portion of the Delta-Mendota Canal. <P> The temporary change is in response to drought conditions and would allow an additional 11 wells to cumulatively pump up to 21 cubic feet per second of groundwater through September 30, 2016 (approximately 2,462 acre-feet in total). <P> A similar program was approved in 2014 and 2015 that allowed 14 and 13 wells, respectively to pump groundwater into the upper portion of the DMC that had between 2 and 5 ppb of selenium. As shown in the Environmental Assessment for this proposal, the addition of groundwater from the 2014 and 2015 actions did not cause a measurable increase in selenium in the DMC. <P> The Final Environmental Assessment and Findings of No Significant Impact were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, and are available at <a href=""></a>. If you encounter problems accessing the document, please call 916-978-5100 or email <P> For additional information or to request a copy of the Final EA and/or FONSI, please contact Rain Emerson at 559-487-5196 (TTY 800-877-8339). <P> Bureau of Reclamation Begins Low-Level Helicopter Research Flights Over Yuma Area
2016-08-24 11:47:00.0 YUMA, Ariz. — Reclamation’s Yuma Area Office (YAO), in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration regulations, is announcing an upcoming research project involving low-level helicopter flights in the Yuma area. The helicopter will be towing a large hexagonal frame over the Yuma agricultural production areas and the Colorado River over the next few weeks to survey and capture groundwater imagery. The flights will begin the last week of August and continue for up to 3 weeks. <P> On August 8, 2016 YAO entered into a contract with SkyTEM to collect real-time airborne electromagnetic geophysical survey flow imagery to determine the amount, location, quality and breadth of groundwater existing in underground channels and aquifers in the area. The instrumentation mounted below the helicopter gathers geologic measurements to learn more about water quality and the extent of aquifers existing below the sub-surface layer. <P> As part of the research effort, the contract helicopter will fly repetitive survey and grid runs over the Yuma Mesa, Yuma Irrigation District, Gila River, Wellton Mohawk, and along the southerly border with Mexico. <P> As part of its primary mission, YAO monitors and manages the depth and concentration of groundwater levels in the Yuma area for the use and benefit of water districts who depend on these supplies from the Colorado and Gila Rivers for irrigation, municipal use, or other related purposes. To better meet current and future water use needs in the area, YAO is undertaking a groundwater resource characterization study throughout the greater Yuma vicinity. <P> In conducting the detailed research, technicians will affix electromagnetic based survey equipment to a hexagon-shaped support apparatus that is towed about 100 feet below the helicopter in a ‘spider web’ array that is designed to map geologic features beneath the earth. The helicopter will be staffed by experienced pilots specially trained for low-level flights using this type of equipment. <P> Data gathered from the research flights will help YAO better understand and manage groundwater resources, and will include detailed geological cross sections and 3D imagery from the very near surface to depths over 350 meters. Data acquisition is expected to take place throughout September. <P> <P> <P> <P> MEDIA ADVISORY: North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program Groundbreaking Event – Friday, August 26
2016-08-23 10:21:00.0 PATTERSON, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation and Del Puerto Water District (District) invite the media to a groundbreaking event for the North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program (NVRRWP). The NVRRWP is a win-win for agriculture and the environment. At full implementation, the NVRRWP will provide up to 59,000 acre-feet per year of treated recycled water conveyed by the cities of Turlock and Modesto to the Delta-Mendota Canal (DMC), a feature of Reclamation’s Central Valley Project. Water in the DMC will then be conveyed directly to the District for irrigation use. Through an agreement with Reclamation, the NVRRWP will also provide supplemental water to certain Central Valley Project Improvement Act-designated wildlife refuges located south of the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. <P> <strong><u>WHAT</u></strong> <strong>: </strong> Groundbreaking event for the NVRRWP. <P> <strong><u>WHEN:</u></strong> Friday, August 26, 2016, at 2 p.m. Media are asked to arrive by 1:30 p.m. <P> <strong><u>WHERE</u></strong> <strong>:</strong> From Sacramento on I-5, take the Patterson Exit #434 (Sperry Avenue); turn left under the freeway; turn left at the first stop light, Rogers Road; at the intersection of Rogers Road and the DMC, you will see signage and individuals directing traffic to turn left onto the canal access road (please see blue line on map). <P> <strong><u>ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:</u></strong> Please visit the project website at <a href=""></a> or visit <a href=""></a> to view Reclamation’s Environmental Impact Statement and Record of Decision. <P> <strong><u>QUESTIONS:</u></strong> Please contact the District at 209-892-4470. <P> <P> Technical Tuesday Presentation eDRAWS September 6, 2016
2016-08-22 15:56:00.0 The Joint Leadership Group (JLG) coordinates “Technical Tuesday” presentations on various subjects of interest for Denver Office staff. The next presentation will be on Tuesday, September 6, 2016, at 11:00 a.m. in the Hungry Horse conference room on eDRAWS. <P> Gary McDanel, Manager of Information Management Services will present on the implementation progress and provide information and training to understand and begin to use the Electronic Drawing Repository and Automated Workflow Solution (eDRAWS). The eDRAWS system is the required method for managing, signing, and archiving all of the Bureau of Reclamation’s 10 million engineering drawings. There will be time allotted for a question and answer period so please bring any questions that you may have about this system. <P> Technical Tuesday sessions are typically the first Tuesday of each month beginning at 11:00 a.m. in the Hungry Horse conference room located in the cafeteria. The schedule of upcoming presentations is being developed and is posted at: <a href=""></a>. If you have suggestions for future topics or questions about the presentations please contact a JLG member, see <a href=""></a>. <P> Reclamation Awards $19 Million Contract for Pump-Generating Plant Upgrades at Grand Coulee Dam
2016-08-22 10:11:00.0 BOISE, Idaho – The Bureau of Reclamation awarded a $19 million contract on August 11 to American Hydro of York, Pennsylvania. The contract calls for replacing and updating equipment for pump generating units 5 and 6 at the John W. Keys III Pump Generating Plant. <P> "This effort is pivotal to the infrastructure modernization at the Keys Plant. The pump units will provide greater efficiency, flexibility and capacity in hydropower production and water delivery," said Reclamation Commissioner Estevan López. <P> The plant, located 90 miles west of Spokane, Washington, is part of the Grand Coulee Dam Power Complex. A multi-purpose project, it provides flood control, irrigation, hydropower production, recreation, stream flows, and fish and wildlife benefits. <P> Construction will take place over the next two years while accommodating for irrigation demand. It is scheduled to be finished by January 2020. <P> This overhaul work continues a 20-year modernization effort at the plant. The project is funded through Bonneville Power Administration, South Columbia Basin Irrigation District, Quincy Columbia Basin Irrigation District, East Columbia Basin Irrigation District and Congressional appropriations. <P> American Hydro is a leading supplier and installer of large equipment for the hydroelectric and water distribution industries, specializing in design, manufacture, upgrades and servicing of high performance hydro-turbines and pumps. <P> TSC Employee Appreciation Photos
2016-08-22 06:00:00.0 On June 29, 2016, the Technical Service Center hosted its annual Employee Appreciation Day. Sandwiches and cake was provided for the employees. <P> The height of the day was the awards presentation to numerous employees in the TSC who had some great accomplishments during the year. <P> I think many weren't sure of the jokes told by Director Thomas Luebke, but he did get some laughs. <P> <iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <P> Scooteney Reservoir Experiencing Toxic Algae Bloom
2016-08-19 20:54:00.0 EPHRATA, Washington - The Bureau of Reclamation is alerting users of Scooteney Park recreation area, located 36 miles south of Moses Lake on Highway 17, that the Benton Franklin Health District has identified a toxic algae bloom on Scooteney Reservoir. <P> The Health District is warning that current algae levels are not safe for humans or animals and could be deadly. Warning signs stating that all people and pets remain out of the water have been posted around the reservoir. <P> Scooteney Park campgrounds and recreation area remains open, as does boating opportunities on the reservoir. <P> Reclamation Releases Draft Water Storage Contract with the City of Fernley and Washoe County Water Conservation District for Public Review
2016-08-19 12:10:00.0 CARSON CITY, Nev. - The Bureau of Reclamation, the City of Fernley and the Washoe County Water Conservation District have completed negotiations for a long-term Water Storage Contract to facilitate the storage of Fernley Municipal Credit Water in Truckee River Reservoirs. <P> Under Title II of Public Law 101-618, Section 205(b)(1), Reclamation is authorized to enter into contracts for the use of space in Truckee River Reservoirs. Contracts must be consistent with the terms and conditions defined in the Truckee River Operating Agreement dated Sept. 6, 2008. <P> The draft contract is available for a 60-day comment period and is available on the Mid-Pacific Region webpage at If you encounter problems accessing the document, please call 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or email <P> Written comments must be received by close of business Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016, and should be sent to Deborah Page, Bureau of Reclamation, 705 North Plaza Street, Suite 320, Carson City, NV 89701, faxed to 775-884-8376 or emailed to For additional information, please contact Page at 775-884-8392. <P> <P> VPN Changing for Computer Users
2016-08-19 08:55:00.0 If you travel, telework or work from home after hours or if you access the Reclamation network via the Department of the Interior VPN for any other reason, It is VERY IMPORTANT that you read this email and make yourself aware of this upcoming significant change. <P> If you do not currently have the Secure Pulse software installed on your laptop, it is essential that you do so as soon as possible to avoid any problems with accessing the VPN. <P> Beginning on August 22, 2016, the old VPN solution will be shut down. You must begin using the Secure Pulse app to login to the VPN. <P> Any questions, please contact the RESC at 303-445-3357. <P> Extended Network Outage on August 21
2016-08-18 14:33:00.0 Due to the hardware failure that occurred in the Reclamation Denver Data Center last Thursday, we have scheduled an extended outage in order to replace some major components. The outage is this Sunday, August 21st, from 8am until 4pm MT. This will affect most of the systems in Denver, but we are taking steps to ensure that some functionality remains for any users that may be in the office during this time. Your Action is required: <P> <strong>ETAS will be affected by this outage. As a result, we encourage all employees to complete their time-sheets in ETAS no later than 4 p.m. on Friday, August 19, 2016.</strong> <P> By completing time-sheets by Friday, we hope to minimize any impact or delay to employee compensation for work performed. The following systems will be unavailable during the outage period: <ul> <li>Public Web Sites, including Water Smart and Water Operations pages</li> <li>ETAS</li> <li>ESAM</li> <li>CARMA</li> <li>Access to FBMS</li> <li>Nearly all of Denver’s Infrastructure - <ul> <li>Denver Sharepoint</li> <li>Denver Intranet</li> <li>Denver File Servers (to include all mapped drives in Denver)</li> <li>Denver Print Servers</li> </ul> </ul> <P> During the outage the following systems in Denver should remain available: <ul> <li>Internet access from Desktop / Laptops connected in Denver</li> <li>Logon Servers</li> <li>Pulse Secure VPN</li> </ul> <P> In addition, the Windows Updates scheduled for this weekend are being postponed. <P> If you have any questions, please contact the RESC at 303-445-3357, 800-595-8344, or email <P> <P> Reclamation Releases Draft EA for Refuge Water Exchange for Tertiary Treated Water
2016-08-17 16:34:00.0 SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation has released for public review a Draft Environmental Assessment analyzing the impacts of approving an exchange of up to 6,000 acre-feet of tertiary treated water for up to 3,000 acre-feet of refuge (or Level 2) water with the San Luis Water District and Panoche Water District. Up to 3,000 acre-feet of Incremental Level 4 water would also be provided to south-of-Delta refuges. <P> By law, Level 2 water amounts are to be provided annually and must be of suitable quality to maintain and improve wetland habitat areas on 19 federal, state and private lands – collectively referred to as refuges. The acquired water would be discharged directly into Bear Creek and delivered to the East Bear Creek Unit of the San Luis National Wildlife Refuge Complex to meet a component of its Level 2 water demand. This water exchange is authorized under the Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Section 3406(d). <P> The Draft EA was prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and is available at <a href=""></a>. If you encounter problems accessing the document online, please call 916-978-5100 or email <a href=""></a>. <P> Written comments must be received by close of business Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2016, and should be sent to Brad Hubbard, Bureau of Reclamation, 2800 Cottage Way (MP-410), Sacramento, CA 95825, or emailed to <a href=""></a>, or faxed to 916-978-5290. <P> For additional information or to request a copy of the Draft EA, please contact Hubbard at 916-978-5204 (TTY 800-877-8339). Copies of the document may also be viewed at Reclamation’s Mid-Pacific Regional Office at the above address. <P> Reclamation and El Dorado Irrigation District Sign Warren Act Contract for Project 184 Water
2016-08-17 14:21:00.0 SACRAMENTO, Calif. – On Aug. 2, 2016, the Bureau of Reclamation and the El Dorado Irrigation District (EID) entered into a Warren Act contract for 17,000 acre-feet per year of EID’s Project 184 supplies (Water Rights Permit 21112) from Folsom Reservoir. The contract will be in effect through February 2030 and is the result of EID’s 25-year effort to secure this new water supply for its customers. <P> “This long-sought contract is the culmination of years of dedicated work by both parties,” said Acting EID General Manager Tom Cumpston. “Access to this supply from Folsom bolsters EID’s robust water portfolio and enhances dry-year water reliability for EID’s customers and the wider community. At the same time, Reclamation has negotiated contract terms that protect both its Folsom Reservoir customers and the aquatic environment downstream of the dam.” <P> Drew Lessard, Area Manager for Reclamation’s Central California Area Office, which manages Folsom Reservoir, stated, “Reclamation is pleased to enter into this contract with EID, which will help ensure critical supplies for their water users through 2030.” <P> EID’s operation of its federally licensed Project 184 hydroelectric project makes the Permit 21112 supplies available; however, permit conditions required that the water be diverted at Folsom Reservoir and that EID enter into a Warren Act contract with Reclamation for the diversion. <P> Deliveries under the long-term Warren Act contract will be limited to 8,500 acre-feet per year until EID completes the installation of a Reclamation-approved fully operational temperature control device at EID’s raw water pump station, at which time the contract will allow diversion of the full 17,000 acre-feet per year of non-Central Valley Project (CVP) water. The long-term Warren Act contract would allow EID to utilize Project 184 water for consumptive use purposes within their CVP service area through February 2030. <P> Reclamation developed an Environmental Assessment (EA) to consider potential impacts of entering into the contract. The Final EA, dated July 2016, supports the Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI), signed on August 2. The Final EA/FONSI were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and are available at <a href=""></a>. If you have problems accessing the documents, please call 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or email <a href=""></a>. <P> The Warren Act authorizes the United States to execute contracts for the conveyance and storage of non-CVP water in federal facilities when excess capacity exists. Warren Act contracts are undertaken under the authority of the Act of June 17, 1902, (32 Stat. 388) and acts amendatory thereof or supplementary thereto, including the Act of February 21, 1911, (36 Stat. 925) and Section 305 of the Reclamation States Emergency Drought Relief Act of 1991, enacted March 5, 1992 (106 Stat. 59). <P> Reclamation Announces Public Meeting on Proposed Land Conveyance for Community Septic System Development at Canyon Ferry Reservoir
2016-08-17 00:00:00.0 BILLINGS, Mont. -- The Bureau of Reclamation has completed a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) to analyze the potential impacts of a proposed federal land disposal. A total of 83.5 acres would be conveyed to the East and West Shore Sewer Districts to allow the future development of contemporary community septic systems. <P> Reclamation currently owns and administers these lands proposed for conveyance. This proposed conveyance would allow the Districts control over certain lands needed for access, development, and operations of these proposed community septic systems. The 83.5 acres identified are the minimum required to develop and operate community septic systems. <P> Due to the close proximity of the various privately owned dwellings on East and West Shore Road to the reservoir, proper disposal of wastewater is important and water quality is a concern. <P> This Federal action is needed to accommodate the replacement of existing septic systems prior to contamination of Canyon Ferry lands and waters. Allowing the development of community septic systems was identified as a future outcome in the 2001 Canyon Ferry Lease Lots Sale Environmental Assessment. <P> The draft EA was prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, and is available for review at <a href=""></a>. <P> Public comments will be accepted between August 22, 2016, and September 23, 2016, at the above web page, by e-mailing Justin Kucera at <a href=""></a> or in writing mailed to Bureau of Reclamation, Attn: Justin Kucera, P.O. Box 30137, Billings, MT 59107-0137. <P> The public meeting will be held Tuesday, August 23, 2016, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the following location: <P> <strong>Jorgenson's Inn and Suites</strong><br> Room 156 (downstairs)<br> 1714 11th Avenue<br> Helena, MT 59601 <P> For more information please contact Justin Kucera at <a href=""></a> or at (406) 247-7330. <P>