Commissioner's Offce News Releases http://www.usbr.gov/newsroom News Releases from Reclamation's Commissioner's Office https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=64303 Bureau of Reclamation names Ernest A. Conant Mid-Pacific Regional Director
WASHINGTON – Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman today named Ernest A. Conant director of the Mid-Pacific Region. Conant has nearly 40 years of water law experience and previously served as senior partner of Young Wooldridge, LLP. <P> “Ernest has been at the forefront of California water for nearly four decades, advocating for water for both agriculture and municipalities,” said Commissioner Burman. “His experience with California water will serve our Mid-Pacific Region well as we continue to develop new, innovative strategies to meet the needs of water users.” <P> As director of Reclamation’s Mid-Pacific Region, Conant will manage one of the nation's largest and most complex water projects, the Central Valley Project, as well as Oregon's Klamath Project; Nevada's Newlands, Humboldt, Washoe and Truckee Storage projects; and California's Cachuma, Orland, Santa Maria, Solano and Ventura River projects. <P> Most recently, Conant served as chair of the Water/Special Districts/Environmental Law Practice Group for Young Wooldridge where he was involved in negotiating major water agreements and has led water banking and other storage initiatives. <P> Conant, whose family has been farming in California for six generations, was born in the northern California city of Marysville. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in 1975 from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where he was named Outstanding Senior by the School of Agriculture and Natural Resources. In 1984-86, he participated in the Class XV California Agricultural Leadership Program. He earned his Juris Doctorate from Pepperdine University in 1979. <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=64125 Robert Pike Named Bureau of Reclamation's Chief of Dam Safety
WASHINGTON - Robert Pike, P.E., has been selected as the Bureau of Reclamation's Chief of Dam Safety. Pike will oversee the Dam Safety Program, which evaluates safety deficiencies and implements proactive solutions at dams across Reclamation. <P> "Reclamation and its partners work to ensure that its dams do not present unreasonable risks to people, property, or the environment," Security, Safety and Law Enforcement Director Karen Knight said. "Bob will use his extensive experience to work with our local, regional and national partners to manage risk at each of our facilities." <P> The Dam Safety Program is composed of two components, The Safety Evaluation of Existing Dams and Initiating Safety of Dams Corrective Actions Program. The Safety Evaluation of Existing Dams program is responsible for performing site evaluations and to identify dams that pose an increased risk to the public and to complete the related analyses needed to expedite corrective action decisions and safeguard the public and associated resources. The Initiating Safety of Dams Corrective Actions program focuses on evaluating and implementing actions to resolve safety concerns at Reclamation dams. <P> Pike joined Reclamation more than 30 years ago after graduating from Montana State University when he started as a rotation engineer working on a rehabilitation and betterment project in Riverton, Wyoming. He also served as an engineer in the Great Plains Regional Office Water Rights and Reservoir Operations as well as the Great Plains Region Dam Safety Coordinator before moving to Denver in 2011 where he served as the Great Plains Region Program Manager in the Dam Safety Office. <P> He was named the deputy chief of the Dam Safety Office in 2014. Pike is a Registered Professional Engineer in Colorado. He is a member of the Association of State Dam Safety Officials, United States Society on Dams, and the Centre for Energy Advancement through Technology Innovation. <P> To learn more about Reclamation's Dam Safety Program, please visit: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/ssle/damsafety/index.html">https://www.usbr.gov/ssle/damsafety/index.html</a>. <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63923 Reclamation Releases Colorado River Basin Ten Tribes Partnership Tribal Water Study
WASHINGTON – Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman announced today the release of the Colorado River Basin Ten Tribes Partnership Tribal Water Study that was conducted collaboratively with the member tribes of the Ten Tribes Partnership. <P> The study documents how Partnership Tribes currently use their water, projects how future water development could occur and describes the potential effects of future tribal water development on the Colorado River System. The study also identifies challenges related to the use of tribal water and explores opportunities that provide a wide range of benefits to both Partnership Tribes and other water users. <P> "We face a prolonged drought that represents one of the driest 20-year periods on the Colorado River in the last 1,200 years," said Commissioner Burman. "This study is an important step forward that furthers our understanding of the challenges facing the Colorado River Basin and the actions we can take to collaboratively address them." <P> While not all federally-recognized tribes in the basin are members of the Ten Tribes Partnership, the Partnership Tribes have reserved water rights, including unresolved claims, to potentially divert nearly 2.8 million acre-feet of water per year from the Colorado River and its tributaries. In many cases, these rights are senior to other uses. <P> The study is the outcome of a commitment between Reclamation and the Partnership Tribes to engage in a joint study to build on the scientific foundation of the Colorado River Basin Water Supply and Demand Study, published by Reclamation in 2012. <P> "Reclamation recognized the need for additional analyses and work following the 2012 Colorado River Basin Study," said Reclamation Lower Colorado Regional Director Terry Fulp. "Working together, the Ten Tribes Partnership and Reclamation have produced a valuable reference that is the first of its kind in the Colorado River Basin." <P> The study highlights tribal observations and concerns, including lack of water security, incomplete distribution systems and regulatory and economic challenges to developing water systems in geographically diverse areas. <P> "In light of the importance of tribal water rights in the Colorado River Basin, the Partnership and Reclamation collaborated to contribute crucial tribal-specific information to the discussions regarding Colorado River management," said Lorelei Cloud, Chairman of the Ten Tribes Partnership. "Without the hard work and dedication of Reclamation, tribal leaders, and tribal staff, this critical project would not have been possible." <P> The Ten Tribes Partnership was formed in 1992 by ten federally recognized tribes with federal Indian reserved water rights in the Colorado River or its tributaries. Five member tribes are located in the Upper Basin (Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, Southern Ute Indian Tribe, Ute Indian Tribe, Jicarilla Apache Nation and Navajo Nation) and five are in the Lower Basin (Fort Mojave Indian Tribe, Colorado River Indian Tribes, Chemehuevi Indian Tribe, Quechan Indian Tribe and Cocopah Indian Tribe). <P> The study is available at: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/lc/region/programs/crbstudy/tribalwaterstudy.html">https://www.usbr.gov/lc/region/programs/crbstudy/tribalwaterstudy.html</a> <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63683 Department of the Interior and Department of Commerce sign Memorandum of Agreement to expedite the reliable delivery and supply of water to the West
WASHINGTON – Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross signed a Memorandum of Agreement last week that will ensure that the Presidential Memorandum on Promoting the Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West is implemented as quickly and smoothly as possible. To that end, the Memorandum of Agreement designated Mr. Paul Souza, Regional Director for the Pacific Southwest Region of the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service, as the Lead Official in charge of managing the Klamath Irrigation and Central Valley Projects’ compliance with Presidential Memorandum’s requirements. <P> “We look forward to collaborating with the Department of Commerce on reducing the regulatory burden on these critical infrastructure projects,” said Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. “This Memorandum moves us one step closer toward ensuring Western water infrastructure can meet the demands of water users today, and in the future.” <P> “Streamlining the regulatory process and removing unnecessary burdens on Western infrastructure projects will help ensure the reliable supply and delivery of water in the region,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “We look forward to working with the Department of the Interior to remove the red tape preventing the American West from improving the infrastructure it needs to thrive and grow.” Presidential Memorandum <P> For decades, uncoordinated regulatory actions diminished the ability of federal, state and local agencies to efficiently deliver water and power to the West in a cost-effective manner. <P> To remove these roadblocks, President Trump issued a Presidential Memorandum October 19th directing the Departments of the Interior and Commerce to do what it takes to ensure that western water users have what they need to irrigate millions of acres of farmland and provide water and power to millions of Americans. <P> Specifically, the Presidential Memorandum directed the Interior and Commerce Departments to take several actions, including: <P> <ul> <li>Expediting regulatory actions essential to the operation of water infrastructure while ensuring compliance with the Endangered Species Act and National Environmental Policy Act;</li> <li>Improving the information and modeling capabilities related to water availability;</li> <li>Expanding use of water desalination and water recycling;</li> <li>Removing unnecessary burdens unique to the operation of the Columbia River Basin’s water infrastructure.</li> </ul> <P> Lead Official <P> The Memorandum of Agreement signed by the Secretaries of Interior and Commerce, designated Paul Souza, Regional Director for the Pacific Southwest Region of the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service, as Lead Official and single executive to supervise the implementation of the Presidential Memorandum as applied to the Klamath Irrigation and Central Valley Projects. In addition, he will be identifying regulations and procedures that potentially burden the projects and developing a proposed plan to suspend, revise or rescind any regulation or procedure that unduly burdens them. <P> The Bureau of Reclamation, Bureau of Indian Affairs and United States Fish and Wildlife Service within the Interior Department, and the National Marine Fisheries Service within the Commerce Department, each serve a vital role in fulfilling the multiple statutory and trust objectives that apply to each Department’s Klamath Basin obligations and will be an integral part of each Department’s implementation of the Presidential Memorandum. <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63643 Bureau of Reclamation seeks comments on WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grant funding opportunity evaluation criteria
WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Reclamation is seeking comments on updated evaluation criteria for the WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grant funding opportunity. <P> The updated evaluation criteria will be used in the 2019 funding opportunity. It can be found at <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/weeg/">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/weeg/</a>. <P> Water and energy efficiency grants focus on projects that conserve and use water more efficiently. Projects may also mitigate conflict risk in areas at a high risk of future water conflict and accomplish other benefits that contribute to water supply reliability in the western United States. Other projects complement on-farm improvements that can be carried out with the assistance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service to accomplish coordinated water conservation improvements. <P> Comments are due by Dec. 20, 2018 to Joshua German at <a href="mailto:jgerman@usbr.gov">jgerman@usbr.gov</a>. <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63623 Bureau of Reclamation announces the winners of the Colorado River Basin Data Visualization Prize Challenge
WASHINGTON - Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman has announced that six submissions were selected to receive awards while three submissions were selected to receive partial awards in the Colorado River Basin Data Visualization Prize Competition. Jared Schwartz was selected to receive the top prize of $15,750. <P> The objective of this prize challenge was to develop a visualization tool to support exploration and understanding of climate, hydrology, river and reservoir conditions across the Colorado River Basin as well as how these conditions vary in space and time. It was also expected that the tool help users understand how fluctuations in river and reservoir conditions relate to their interests, such as water supply and recreation opportunities. <P> Jared Schwartz was selected to receive $15,750 for his submission of the Colorado River Reservoir Explorer. It consisted of an interactive map allowing users to locate and view Colorado River Basin reservoirs and display a wide variety of information about those reservoirs. It included a simple but informative display of reservoir storage, inflow, release, and evaporation in the context of historical data, plus a weather summary linked to each reservoir based on USGS hydrologic units. It was the most comprehensive submission with respect to the datasets utilized, drawing on both Reclamation reservoir data and weather data from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. Others receiving awards for their submissions are: <P> Michael Norton - $10,750<br /> Timothy Han - $7,750<br /> Ben Crary - $7,750<br /> Nicholas Gottlieb - $5,250 Dawn Barton, Mary Qawiyy, Robin Tully, Katlyn Kinsey, and Hareem Mannan - $5,250<br /> Ibrahim Demir - $2,500<br /> Jared Schwartz - $2,500<br /> Raibatak Das - $2,500 <P> For those submissions that receive funding, the federal government will receive a broad license and right to use all solutions. The solver will retain ownership of their idea or concept demonstrated by their proposal. <P> Reclamation collaborated with the U.S. Geological Survey, the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center, the Natural Resource Conservation Service and the U.S. Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission on this prize competition. <P> To learn more prize competitions at Reclamation, please visit Reclamation's Water Prize Competition Center at: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/index.html">www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/index.html</a>. <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63583 Bureau of Reclamation releases report on reservoir operations pilot study for Washita Basin in Oklahoma
WASHINGTON - The Bureau of Reclamation has released a report that identifies innovative approaches to improve drought resiliency within the Washita Basin in Oklahoma. The study specifically looked at Foss and Fort Cobb Reservoirs, and the approach can be applied anywhere across the Western United States. <P> The study showed that a repeat of paleo droughts could have far greater impacts on reservoir yield than the observed drought of record. The study also predicted the probability of paleo droughts being worse than the observed drought of record, and hence quantified the risks of a reservoir not fulfilling its intended purposes under different drought scenarios. <P> For Foss Reservoir, the firm yield, as determined by the observed 1970s drought of record, is 19,700 acre-feet per year. Through the Enhanced Drought Response Reservoir Operations model, it is predicted that the reservoir firm yield under five paleo drought scenarios would range from 14,000 to 7,400 acre-feet per year. If the maximum demand were to be placed on the reservoir, the demands would need to be reduced between 32 and 66 percent in order to prevent the reservoir from going dry. The probability of a paleo drought being worse than the observed drought of record was found to be about 30 percent. <P> For Fort Cobb Reservoir, the firm yield as determined by the observed 1950s drought of record, is 19,200 acre-feet per year. Through the model, it is predicted that the reservoir yield during the five paleo droughts will range between 18,700 to 15,300 acre-feet per year. If the maximum demand were to be placed on the reservoir, the demands would need to be reduced between 36 and 53 percent to prevent the reservoir from going dry. The probability of a paleo drought being worse than the observed drought of record was found to be about 10 percent. <P> This information will better inform long-term planning efforts and preparation for the next drought. The new modeling tools developed for this study also can be used in real-time during a drought to inform decisions on how much demands need to be curtailed to prevent a reservoir from going dry. <P> Firm yield is the amount of water a reservoir can reliably deliver to customers. The challenge to water managers is that the observed hydrologic record encompasses a narrow period of time. This study combined existing tree ring data and reconstructed the annual Palmer Drought Severity Index over a 600-year historical period to generate new inflow sequences that were used to calculate reservoir firm yield. By having the longer historical record, a more robust calculation of a range of reservoir firm yields that can be used to assist water managers to inform decisions that affect water supply reliability. <P> Foss and Fort Cobb Reservoirs are located in central Oklahoma and are responsible for 90 percent of the surface water supply in the area, providing municipal water for about 40,000 people. Although Reclamation maintains ownership of the dam and conveyance facilities, operations and maintenance responsibilities have been transferred to the Foss and Fort Cobb Reservoir Master Conservancy Districts. <P> This study was conducted as part of Reclamation's Reservoir Operations Pilot Initiative, which aims to identify innovative approaches to improve water management strategies in the Western United States. This program assists stakeholders to develop guidance for identifying and implementing changes that increase flexibility in reservoir operations in response to future variability in water supplies, floods and droughts. The full report may be viewed at <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/pilots/">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/pilots/</a>. <P> It is part of Reclamation’s WaterSMART Program. Through WaterSMART, Reclamation works cooperatively with states, Tribes, and local entities as they plan for and implement actions to increase water supply through investments to modernize existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts. Visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart</a> for additional information about the program. <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63528 Bureau of Reclamation selects 58 projects to receive $3.7 million for WaterSMART small-scale water efficiency projects in 16 western states
WASHINGTON - Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman announced today that Reclamation has selected 58 projects to receive $3.7 million for small-scale water efficiency projects in 16 western states. The funding from Reclamation is being leveraged to support more than $8.2 million in improvements throughout the West. The projects funded with these grants include installation of flow measurement devices and automation technology, canal lining or piping to address seepage, municipal meter upgrades, and other projects to conserve water. <P> Funding of up to $75,000 is provided to projects on a 50-percent cost-share. A complete list of the projects selected is available at: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/swep/">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/swep/</a>. <P> The City of Avondale in Arizona is receiving $75,000 to update two water treatment/booster station wells within their system. They will connect them to their current supervisory control and data acquisition system which will help them better manage their water supplies. <P> The North Kern Water Storage District in Bakersfield, California, is receiving $75,000 to install SCADA software to interface with previously installed SCADA equipment and two evapotranspiration measurement stations in the service area. <P> The City of Gallup in northwest New Mexico is receiving $60,000 to upgrade old mechanical meters with modern solid-state meters for industrial, commercial and institutional users. This project will allow for allow for more accurate measurement of water consumption and is supported by its 2013 water conservation plan. <P> Small-Scale Water Efficiency Projects are part of Reclamation’s WaterSMART Program. The program aims to improve water conservation and reliability, helping water resource managers make sound decisions about water use. Learn more at <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/swep/">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/swep/</a>. <P> Visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart</a> for additional information about the WaterSMART program. <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63426 Bureau of Reclamation selects three submissions to receive prizes for the eradication of invasive mussels in open water prize competition
WASHINGTON - Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman announced today that Reclamation has selected three submissions for its prize competition seeking ideas to eradicate mussels in open water. Steven Suhr and Marie-Claude Senut will receive a full award of $80,000 for their idea while Wen Chen and Absar Alum with Stephanie Bone will each receive $10,000. <P> "Providing water managers with new tools to control invasive quagga and zebra mussels is an important part of protecting infrastructure and ecosystems," Commissioner Burman said. "Reclamation is committed to working with our partners to prevent the spread of quagga and zebra mussels in the West." <P> The prize competition was a theoretical challenge and sought innovative solutions to eradicate invasive quagga and zebra mussels from large reservoirs, lakes and rivers in a cost-effective and environmentally sound manner. Invasive mussel infestations pose a significant logistical and economic challenge for local communities, recreationists and water managers. There is no practical method available today for the large-scale control of invasive dreissenid mussel population once they become established. <P> Steven Suhr and Marie-Claude Senut, founders of Biomilab, LLC, proposed using genomic modification to induce a lethal malignant hemic neoplasia in mussels that can be transferred from one mussel to another by proximity. They suggested utilizing the CRISPR/cas9-mediated genome modification to target the function or expression of endogenous dreissenid mussel p53 or telomerase reverse transcriptase genes, or to introduce the viral SV40 Tag gene. This submission for the prize competition received $80,000. <P> Wen Chen, a research scientist at Harvard Medical School, proposed utilizing single stranded DNA/RNA oligonucleotide-based aptamers to target the modified amino acid 3,4 dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) or dreissenid specific foot proteins to interrupt attachment, eventually leading to mussel mortality. The use of aptamers to target DOPA and foot proteins to interrupt mussel settlement is a novel idea and received $10,000. <P> Absar Alum of BioDetek with Stephanie Bone proposed genome modification to develop male mussels that produce sperm containing a light triggered optogenetic switch to drive upregulation or downregulation of cyclin-b expression resulting in death of the fertilized egg. This strategy relies on sunlight penetration into the upper portions of a water body to turn on the optogenetic switch in free-floating, transparent developing eggs and embryos. It was found to be a novel idea and received $10,000. <P> A total of 238 solvers signed up to solve this challenge and more than 100 solvers submitted solutions. Of those solutions submitted, 67 were deemed viable and were judged. Reclamation collaborated with the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Molloy & Associates on this prize competition. To learn more about this prize competition please visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/mussels.html">https://www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/mussels.html</a>. <P> The results of this prize competition will support a broader effort by the federal government, as well as work by the Western Governors' Association, western states, and tribes to protect western ecosystems, water infrastructure and hydroelectric facilities from invasive mussels. To learn more, please visit https://www.usbr.gov/mussels. <P> To learn more prize competitions at Reclamation, please visit Reclamation's Water Prize Competition Center at: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/index.html">www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/index.html</a>. <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63423 Shelby Hagenauer Named Reclamation’s Deputy Commissioner
WASHINGTON –Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman today announced the appointment of Shelby Hagenauer as Reclamation's Deputy Commissioner. Hagenauer has nearly two decades of experience working on natural resource issues including the Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act and federal water policy. <P> “Shelby’s understanding of natural resource policy and knowledge of Capitol Hill will be a great asset for Reclamation,” said Commissioner Burman. “Her policy experience will help us craft common sense water policy and enable us to better deliver water and hydroelectric power to the west.” <P> Hagenauer has close to 20 years of experience working in and with the federal government through positions on Capitol Hill and the private sector. Her policy experience ranges from work on natural resource, agriculture and California water policy to financial services and defense issues. <P> Hagenauer spent more than a decade serving on the staffs of current House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA-23) and former House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas. She was the lead water policy staff for both Members, working extensively on behalf of congressional districts from the Central Valley of California. Additionally, she was Leader McCarthy’s primary advisor for 2008 Farm Bill reauthorization activities. <P> In the private sector, Hagenauer continued working with natural resource clients as part of the Public Policy Practice Group at Nossaman LLP. <P> Hagenauer earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of William and Mary in Virginia. After growing up on and near military bases around the country, including graduating from high school at Edwards Air Force Base, she considers California her home. <P> <P> <P> <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63345 Department of the Interior seeks comments on proposed categorical exclusion under National Environmental Policy Act for certain types of transfers of title for Bureau of Reclamation facilities
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of the Interior has published a Federal Register notice seeking public comment on a proposed categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act for certain transfers of title of projects and facilities from the Bureau of Reclamation to qualifying non-federal entities. Reclamation is proposing to establish a new categorical exclusion to facilitate the transfer of title for a limited set of simple, noncontroversial or uncomplicated projects and/or project facilities. <P> The federal register notice is available at <a href="https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2018-22630">https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2018-22630</a>. <P> Title transfer is a voluntary conveyance of ownership for water projects including dams, canals, laterals and other water-related infrastructure to the beneficiaries of those facilities. It divests Reclamation of responsibility for the operation, maintenance, management, regulation of, and liability for the project, lands and facilities to be transferred. <P> The benefitting non-federal entity is also provided with greater autonomy and flexibility to manage the facilities to meet their needs in compliance with federal, state, and local laws and in conformance with contractual obligations. Public comments on this proposed action are due to Reclamation 30 days from the day it appears in the Federal Register, which is November 16, 2018. <P> A transfer of title is a federal action under NEPA. NEPA requires that when a major federal cation may have significant impacts on the quality of the human environment, a statement be prepared to describe the impacts and effects on the human environment associated with the federal action. If it is determined that a certain category of actions will not normally have a significant effect on the human environment, those actions may be excluded from further NEPA review. <P> You can learn more about title transfers at the Bureau of Reclamation at <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/title">www.usbr.gov/title</a>. <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63324 Bureau of Reclamation provides funding opportunity for established watershed groups for on-the-ground watershed management projects
WASHINGTON - The Bureau of Reclamation has opened a funding opportunity for watershed groups to seek funding to implement on-the-ground watershed management projects for their communities. The funding provided through the Cooperative Watershed Management Program helps local stakeholders develop local solutions that will improve water reliability while reducing conflict, addressing complex water issues and stretching limited water supplies. <P> Reclamation anticipates awarding between six and 10 projects through this funding opportunity. To view the funding opportunity, please visit <a href="https://grants.gov">grants.gov</a> and search for opportunity number BOR-DO-18-F013. Applications are due on January 30, 2019 by 4:00 p.m. MDT. <P> Each project may receive up to $300,000 in federal funding. The recipient must provide a minimum of 50-percent of the total project costs. <P> To be eligible for this funding, the applicant must be a watershed group. A watershed group is defined as a grassroots, non-regulatory entity that addresses water availability and quality issues with the relevant watershed, is capable of promoting the sustainable use of water resources in the watershed, makes decisions on a consensus basis, and represents a diverse group of stakeholders, including irrigated agriculture, the environment, municipal water suppliers, hydroelectric producers, livestock grazing, timber production, land development, recreation or tourism, private property owners, federal, state and local governments, and tribes. <P> To learn more about the Cooperative Watershed Management Program, please visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/cwmp/">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/cwmp/</a>. <P> Through WaterSMART, Reclamation works cooperatively with States, Tribes, and local entities as they plan for and implement actions to increase water supply through investments to modernize existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts. Visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart</a> for additional information about the program. <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63323 Bureau of Reclamation launches prize challenge seeking new or improved techniques for reservoir sediment removal in a cost-effective manner
WASHINGTON - The Bureau of Reclamation is launching a new prize challenge seeking new or improved techniques to remove sediment from reservoirs in a cost-effective manner. Sedimentation in reservoirs can be a significant problem by limiting the active life of reservoirs by reducing available water storage capacity or flood control benefits. Sedimentation also impacts dam outlets, reservoir water intakes, water quality, recreation, upstream flood stage, and downstream habitat. <P> This is a theoretical challenge where solvers can provide ideas on sediment collection, transport, or delivery to the downstream river. In a theoretical challenge the only thing required is a white paper. Solvers are asked to submit their idea with detailed descriptions, drawings, illustrations, specifications, supporting data or literature, and any other things that would be needed to bring the idea to practice. <P> In this first stage, a total prize pool of $75,000 is available. The minimum full amount award is $15,000. Depending on the proposal, Reclamation may award more than that up to the total prize purse. If this first stage produces winning concepts and Reclamation determines a second stage is beneficial, it will launch a subsequent challenge where participants will be asked to present their proposal and provide a working prototype. In addition to an anticipated higher monetary award, Reclamation will invite industry, non-profit organizations, and venture capital representatives to the Stage 2 presentations and testing. <P> Submissions for this competition must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. EST on January 4, 2019. <P> Reclamation is partnering with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Natural Resource Conservation Service and American Rivers on various aspects of this prize competition. <P> To learn more about this prize competition and other competitions Reclamation has hosted, please visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/index.html">https://www.usbr.gov/research/challenges/index.html</a>. <P> <div class="fluid-video"> <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/4v2o6tEIz-E?rel=0&showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63287 Bureau of Reclamation awards $1.3 million to seven projects to develop water market strategies in their communities
WASHINGTON - Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman announced that Reclamation has awarded $1.3 million to seven projects to establish or expand water markets or water marketing activities. These seven projects are located in California, Colorado, Nevada, Oklahoma, and Washington. <P> "Water marketing provides communities a solution to move water between willing sellers and buyers within their local delivery areas," Commissioner Burman said. "A water market is just one of the several tools water managers need to manage water within their communities." <P> A complete description of the selected projects is available at: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/watermarketing/index.html">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/watermarketing/index.html</a>. The selected projects are: <P> Carson Water Subconservancy District (Nevada)<br /> Reclamation funding: $100,000, non-federal funding: $111,649 <P> City of Grand Junction (Colorado)<br /> Reclamation funding: $200,000, non-federal funding: $200,000 <P> County of Madera (California)<br /> Reclamation funding: $199,999, non-federal funding: $200,000 <P> Inland Empire Utilities Agency (California)<br /> Reclamation funding: $400,000, non-federal funding: $1,266,949 <P> McMullin Area Groundwater Sustainability Agency (California)<br /> Reclamation funding: $193,000, non-federal funding: $193,000 <P> Seleh-Moxee Irrigation District (Washington)<br /> Reclamation funding: $72,900, non-federal funding: $72,900 <P> The Chickasaw Nation (Oklahoma)<br /> Reclamation funding: $149,228, non-federal funding: $149,228 <P> Water marketing strategy grants are used to conduct planning activities in developing a water marketing strategy. Water marketing refers to water rights transactions and includes the lease, sale or exchange of water rights undertaken in accordance with state and federal laws between willing buyers and sellers. Learn more at: <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/watermarketing/index.html">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/watermarketing/index.html</a>. <P> Through WaterSMART, Reclamation works cooperatively with States, Tribes, and local entities as they plan for and implement actions to increase water supply through investments to modernize existing infrastructure and attention to local water conflicts. Visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart</a> for additional information about the program. <P> <P> <P>
https://www.usbr.gov/newsroom/newsrelease/detail.cfm?RecordID=63284 Bureau of Reclamation selects 54 projects to receive $26.5 million to improve water efficiency in the West
WASHINGTON – Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman announced that Reclamation has selected 54 projects to receive a total of $26.5 million through WaterSMART water and energy efficiency grants. This funding will be leveraged to accomplish approximately $167 million in improvements throughout the West. The projects funded with these grants include canal lining and piping, automated gates and control systems, and installation of advanced metering. <P> “President Trump is dedicated to better water infrastructure for communities and farmers, and adequate and safe water supplies are fundamental to the health, economy, and security of the country,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. WaterSMART water and energy efficiency grants enable Interior, states, tribes, and local entities to work together to take action to increase available water supply through infrastructure investments.” <P> "Improving water efficiency is an important part of ensuring communities have a reliable water supply in the future," Commissioner Burman said. "The projects we’ve selected today will help communities throughout the Western United States by providing them with tools they can use to better manage their water needs." <P> Water and energy efficiency grants focus on projects that conserve and use water more efficiently. Projects may also lessen the risk of future water conflicts and provide other benefits that contribute to water supply reliability in the western United States. Other projects complement on-farm improvements that can be carried out with the assistance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service to accomplish coordinated water conservation improvements. <P> Funding is provided in two groups. Funding Group I projects receive up to $300,000 and can be completed within two years. Funding Group II projects may receive up to $1 million for a phased project up to three years. <P> The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes near Pocatello, Idaho, will receive $888,818 to replace a 1,500-horsepower pump on the Portneuf River and install a new variable frequency drive pump. It will also line one mile of earthen canal to reduce water losses due to seepage. The project is expected to result in a water savings of 5,628 acre-feet per year which will increase tribal water supply and improve drought resiliency. <P> The Mapleton Irrigation District and Company near Provo, Utah, will replace three miles of existing open canals and a box culvert in Hobble Creek Canyon with a pressurized pipeline that will eliminate water losses due to seepage, evaporation and ditch failure. They will receive $300,000 towards the $1.2 million project. It is expected to result in an annual water savings of 1,685 acre-feet each year. <P> The City of Bakersfield will receive $743,300 to install monitoring devices with telemetry at 20 locations along the Kern River and a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition system to accurately and remotely measure Kern River diversions. The $1.6 million project will result in an annual water savings of 4,592 acre-feet that will be used to replenish the local groundwater and make more water available to users, helping to reduce the potential for water-related conflicts in the area. <P> The complete list of projects is available at <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/weeg/">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/weeg/</a>. Projects were selected through a competitive process and must provide a minimum of a 50-percent cost-share. <P> Visit <a href="https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart">https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart</a> for additional information about the WaterSMART program. <P> <P>