By Chris Shutes, FERC Projects Director
CSPA filed comments today on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the relicensing of the McCloud – Pit Hydroelectric Project (FERC #2106). CSPA focused on two major areas of concern. First, the DEIS fails to analyze the likely reintroduction of salmon and steelhead to the McCloud River, and fails to address flow needs in the river should reintroduction take place. Second, the Staff Alternative proposes to release less water to the McCloud River in the spring than was proposed by the Forest Service.
CSPA’s comments argue that reintroduction of salmonids to the McCloud should be addressed now, and not pushed off to an indefinite future that is likely to never come. And until such time as salmon and/or steelhead are restored to the McCloud, in which event summer flows would likely need to be increased, CSPA supports the Forest Service’s proposed flows, which more closely replicate the natural snowmelt hydrograph than do the flows proposed by FERC staff. (More…)