Monthly Report Archive

YBSA Monthly Report November, 2017

YBSA Monthly Report

November, 2017

Kachess Final EIS: The Bureau of Reclamation and Department of Ecology are still working on a final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Lake Kachess pumping project which will drawdown an additional 200,000 acre/feet of water form the Lake. A Senate bill proposed by Senator Cantwell states the beneficiary of the new water will be responsible for the cost. The Senate has not considered the proposed legislation.

U.S. Representative Dan Newhouse submitted legislation in the House of Representatives that supports the Yakima River plan which would:

  • Provide greater water supply reliability for farmers and communities.
  • Secure the water that communities need to meet current and future demand.
  • Protect over 200,000 acres of currently unprotected forest, shrub steppe, and river habitat.
  • Enhanced habitat along the Yakima River and its tributaries.
  • Implement water marketing and banking so that water is more easily delivered when and where needed.
  • Build fish passage to allow salmon, steelhead, and bull trout to travel throughout the basin.

Meeting with Yakima County Commissioners: YBSA met with the Yakima County Commissioners to discuss the thermal barrier that is creating a problem for returning salmonoids in the lower Yakima River. We expressed our concern to the commissioners that the storage project located in the Yakima Basin in the Integrated Plan may not be completed. An additional storage project listed in the original Integrated Plan was a review of using Columbia River water to address the water needs in the Yakima Basin.

Lower Yakima River in Integrated Plan: The information in the Integrated Plan implies that there will be less water provided for instream flow in the lower Yakima River.

Adverse Climate Change Effects: In a review of all water storage projects completed with adverse climate change, 29 out of 90 years (about 1/3 of the time) less than 70% of the water would be available.

Reservoir Water Storage: Water Storage in the Yakima Basin is progressing at a normal rate. When all reservoirs are full they will only provide 1/3 of the annual water needed for instream and out of stream uses.


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