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Reclamation Releases Draft EA/FONSI for Recirculation of Recaptured Water Year 2011 San Joaquin River Restoration Program Interim Flows

Media Contact: Pete Lucero, 916-978-5100, plucero@usbr.gov

For Release: March 09, 2011

The Bureau of Reclamation has released for public review the Draft Environmental Assessment and Draft Finding of No Significant Impact (Draft EA/FONSI) for the Recirculation of Recaptured Water Year 2011 San Joaquin River Restoration Program (SJRRP) Interim Flows. 

Reclamation estimates that up to 260,000 acre-feet of recaptured Interim Flows could be made available for recirculation back to Central Valley Project (CVP) Friant Division contractors as Class 1 or 2 supplies during Water Year 2011 (Class 2 is additional water, when available, beyond the firm amount of 800,000 acre-feet of Class 1 water). This recaptured water would be available at South-of-Delta facilities for direct delivery to the Friant Division or through transfers and exchanges between Friant contractors and non-Friant contractors. 

The federal action would involve Reclamation entering into various delivery, transfer or exchange agreements to recirculate the recaptured water to the Friant contractors. The deliveries, transfers and exchanges would be completed through several potential mechanisms utilizing federal, state and local facilities. Friant contractors may transfer or exchange their water to other Friant or non-Friant contractors, not in excess of the existing non-Friant contractors' CVP contract allocations. 

The 2006 Stipulation of Settlement (Settlement) in NRDC, et al., v. Rodgers, et al., provides for the development of a recapture and recirculation plan as a part of the implementation of the SJRRP water management goal. The goal is to reduce or avoid adverse water supply impacts to all of the Friant Division long-term contractors that may result from the Interim Flows and Restoration Flows. 

The Draft EA/FONSI for the proposed action was prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and is available online. If you encounter problems accessing the document online, please call 916-978-5100 or e-mail mpPublicAffairs@usbr.gov

Please send written comments to Michelle Banonis, Bureau of Reclamation, 2800 Cottage Way, MP-170, Sacramento, CA, 95825, by 5 p.m. Friday, March 25, 2011, or e-mail comments to mbanonis@usbr.govor fax them to 916-978-5469. For questions or to request a copy of the Draft EA/FONSI, please contact Margaret Gidding at 916-978-5461 (TTY 800-735-2922) or mgidding@usbr.gov. Copies of the Draft EA/FONSI may also be viewed at Reclamation's South-Central California Area Office, 1243 N Street, Fresno, CA, 93721 (559-487-5041). For more information on the SJRRP, please visit www.restoresjr.net

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation's second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at https://www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

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