Enhancing Reclamation Water Storage Capacity using Dredging

Project ID: 6583
Principal Investigator: Doug Craft
Research Topic: Sediment Management and River Restoration
Funded Fiscal Years: 2005
Keywords: None

Research Question

The United States plans to replace river outlet works and augment reservoir surface elevation by raising existing embankments at Folsom Dam and Lake, California.

* Would dredging Folsom Lake provide a viable alternative approach to both increase reservoir capacity and provide a source of embankment construction materials?

* Could dredging restore lost storage capacity in Lake Clementine, upstream of Folsom, thereby enhancing flood protection and reducing sediment loading to Folsom?

* Given the known concentrations of mercury and other toxic trace elements in the watershed, are the sediments a hazardous material?

* What other regulatory issues are implied by dredging?

* Would dredged sediments have properties suitable for construction or agricultural materials?

This Science and Technology (S&T) Program scoping research project seeks to help answer these specific questions for reservoirs on the American River system; however, the problem of lost reservoir capacity from sediment filling is a serious Reclamation-wide issue.

Need and Benefit

This sort of preliminary investigation is critical to developing sound cost estimates, engineering designs, and specifications for dredging. Area Office budgets are unavailable for this sort of activity, which will require the assistance of a research chemist (Craft) and an environmental regulatory specialist (Bernal).

Contributing Partners

Contact the Principal Investigator for information about partners.

Research Products

Please contact research@usbr.gov about research products related to this project.

Return to Research Projects

Last Updated: 4/4/17