U.C. Davis study finds dams ineffective for conservation…

By Dan Bacher | September 9, 2021 | Sacramento News and Review

For many years, federal, state and corporate proponents of building more dams in California have touted cold water river releases provided by increased water storage behind dams as a key tool in “saving” struggling salmon and steelhead populations.

Yet a just published study by the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences, Dams Ineffective for Cold-Water Conservation– 8/25/21, has found that dams are ineffective for the cold water conservation that is needed to preserve imperiled salmon, steelhead and trout.

”Dams poorly mimic the temperature patterns California streams require to support the state’s native salmon and trout — more than three-quarters of which risk extinction,” according to the study published in the journal PLOS ONE by the University of California, Davis. “Bold actions are needed to reverse extinction trends and protect cold-water streams that are resilient to climate warming.”

The study helps identify where high-quality, cold-water habitat remains to help managers prioritize conservation efforts.

https://sacramento.newsreview.com/2021/09/09/u-c-davis-study-finds-dams-ineffective-for-conservation-of-salmon-and-trout-in-sacramento-area-waterways/

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Making the Best of the Poor Conditions in this Critically Dry Year

By Jessica Law | July 23, 2021 | Sacramento Water Forum

Severe drought conditions are back in California. Unfortunately, that means the Lower American River is headed into what may be some of the worst summer conditions we’ve seen on the river in recent memory.

I won’t sugarcoat it. Conditions in the river will be bad. However, the Water Forum and our partners are working hard to ensure conditions are as good as they can possibly be, and to minimize harm to fish and habitat.

What to expect in the coming months

PHOTO CREDIT: DWR, Lower American River 2014

As you may have seen on the news, we began this year with a near-normal snowpack. In most years, the snowpack melts and feeds our lakes and rivers. This year, the snowpack disappeared in the span of several weeks, soaking into the dry soil or evaporating—perhaps foreshadowing what may turn out to be the case study for climate change impacts on our water supplies and environment.

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Drought Conditions and the Sac Water Forum

On June 1, 2021, Habitat 2020 hosted a presentation/discussion led by Jessica Law, Executive Director of the Sacramento Water Forum.

Jessica’s presentation was focused on the projected conditions of the Folsom Reservoir and the American River as we move through the current drought year and what these conditions portend for the Lower American River, the fisheries in it, and the environment around it. Jessica provided us the results of ongoing analysis done by her consulting staff on water flows and temperatures projected to occur that result from the Bureau’s reservoir operations including their impacts on the fisheries. She also briefed us on discussions she is having with the Bureau and other agencies involved in river operations. finally, Jessica discussed the Folsom Reservoir and American River operations, flows, and temperature objectives the Water Forum is working to have the Bureau and others adopt for this year.

Click here for a video recording of the presentation on Google Drive.

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