News Release Archive

Reclamation Releases a Draft Environmental Assessment for Habitat Restoration Project

Media Contact: Ann Demint , (505)462-3654, ademint@usbr.gov
Scott Heber , shebner@usbr.gov

For Release: February 10, 2016

Albuquerque, NM. – Reclamation’s Environmental Assessment for the San Acacia Habitat Restoration Project from River Mile 116 to 99 is available for public review and comment. The New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission is proposing to implement habitat restoration projects along a 17-mile reach of the Middle Rio Grande immediately downstream of the San Acacia Diversion Dam in Socorro County. The area for proposed restoration sites is managed by Reclamation and the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District.

The proposed project would create approximately 14 acres of off-channel aquatic habitat at five sites along the river within the San Acacia Reach. The project design would benefit the federally listed Rio Grande silvery minnow by providing low velocity habitat and improving connection of the river with its floodplain. The project would also benefit the federally listed southwestern willow flycatcher and the yellow-billed cuckoo, as well as the Middle Rio Grande ecosystem as a whole. The proposed activities would include reconfiguring the current channel and bankline, reconnecting floodplains, and removing non-native vegetation.

The Environmental Assessment describes and analyzes the construction of the five habitat restoration sites. A copy of the document can be obtained at http://www.usbr.gov/uc/envdocs/index.html or by contacting Ann Demint at the Albuquerque Office (505-462-3654) or Sabrina Baldonado at the Socorro Field Division Office (575-835-1202). Reclamation will consider all comments postmarked by February 25, 2016, before preparing the final EA. Written comments can be submitted by email to ademint@usbr.gov or mailed to: Ann Demint, Bureau of Reclamation, Albuquerque Area Office, 555 Broadway NE, Suite 100, Albuquerque, NM 87109.

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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.