Keechelus-to-Kachess Conveyance Project
The Keechelus Reservoir-to-Kachess Reservoir Conveyance (KKC) project is one of several potential structural and operational changes being studied by the Bureau of Reclamation and the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) to improve water resources management in the Yakima River basin. The KKC is being developed under the Yakima River Basin Water Enhancement Project (YRBWEP) as part of the Yakima River Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan (Integrated Plan).
The KKC would divert water from the Yakima River immediately downstream from the Keechelus Dam and convey it through a new tunnel to the Kachess Reservoir. This diversion could serve two purposes:
- it would reduce high flows below the dam (at certain times of the year), which would provide spawning and rearing habitat for fish in the Yakima River, particularly Chinook and steelhead, and
- it would accelerate refilling of the Kachess Reservoir if the proposed Kachess Drought Relief Pumping Plant (KDRPP) is constructed and operated during a drought year. Both projects align with the goals of the Integrated Plan to provide additional water supply for agriculture, municipal and domestic uses, and to improve fish habitat and passage.
Since the proposed KKC and KDRPP projects are closely connected, Reclamation and Ecology prepared the Kachess Drought Relief Pumping Plant and Keechelus Reservoir-to-Kachess Reservoir Conveyance Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) in a single document. It includes environmental analyses for both the KKC and KRDPP.
The DEIS was released in January 2015 and described the no-action alternative and five action alternatives. The public comment period ended June 15, 2015.
Reclamation and Ecology have reviewed all comments on the DEIS, developed a floating pumping plant alternative, collected additional scientific data as necessary, and evaluated new findings. The new alternative and the new findings have been documented in the Kachess Drought Relief Pumping Plant and Keechelus Reservoir-to-Kachess Reservoir Conveyance Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) released to the public April 13, 2018.
The SDEIS will not contain comment letters received on the DEIS; instead, letters and response to comments from both the DEIS and SDEIS will be in a final environmental impact statement.
Questions or comments on the SDEIS were accepted until July 11, 2018.
Reclamation and Ecology held two public meetings: May 16, 2018, in Cle Elum and May 17, 2018, in Ellensburg, where comments were accepted and the following poster displays, factsheet, and other documentation were available.
|SDEIS Public Meeting Materials PDF 10.33 mb|
|04/2018||Supplemental draft EIS for Kachess and Keechelus projects available for review HTML|
|04/2015||Update: Kachess Drought Relief Pumping Plant and Keechelus Reservoir to Kachess Reservoir Conveyance Projects PDF 151 kb|
|01/09/2015||Draft EIS for Kachess and Keechelus Projects Released HTML|
|Washington State Department of Ecology|
Bureau of Reclamation
Pacific Northwest Region
Columbia-Cascades Area Office
1917 Marsh Road
Yakima, WA 98901-2058
Director, Office of Columbia River
State of Washington
Department of Ecology
15 W. Yakima Ave, Ste 200
Yakima, WA 98902-3452