Opinion

Hayley Hutt: Water bill terminates Hoopa Valley Tribe's rights





"The Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement expires Dec. 31. Isn't now the time to let that happen and separate Klamath Basin water rights and dam removal issues?

The KBRA does not offer thousands of acre-feet of additional non-winter river flows to the Klamath River, as some people claim. To the contrary, the KBRA's failure to provide the water fish need is at the heart of the Hoopa Tribe's opposition to the deal. Our Fishery Department's hydrologists have long been warning about insufficient water. Humboldt County has worked with us to protect Trinity River flows from the Delta Tunnels, and they joined with us in urging additional flows this summer to avert a fish kill. But Humboldt is strangely ignorant of how much less water KBRA promises to the river.

Reclamation's studies on the unfinished dam Environmental Impact Statement, and posted on the KlamathRestoration.gov website, show that in most water years the KBRA will provide less water to the Klamath River, not more. In fact, KBRA promises even less than the current Endangered Species Act-required flows. (Please see “Technical Report No. SRH-2011-02, Hydrology, Hydraulics, and Sediment Transport Studies for the Secretary's Determination on Klamath River Dam Removal and Basin Restoration.”) The KBRA delivers less water to the Klamath River than at present in hydrological conditions represented by 30 percent, 50 percent, 90 percent, and 95 percent exceedance water years. And take note: even now, Reclamation is seeking permission to cut the river back to KBRA flows -- even without dam removal. "

Get the Story:
Hayley Hutt: KBRA: It's about the water -- period (The Eureka Times-Standard 11/14)