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California | Central Valley | Environment & Forest Defense | Government & Elections

Save the Mokelumne River from a New Dam
by Dan Bacher
Thursday Jul 2nd, 2009 10:34 AM
During a time of fish collapses and severe economic crisis, the East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) is proposing to build a new 400-foot dam on the Mokelumne River as part of its 2040 water plan. "The dam will be yet another nail in the coffin of the Delta and our crashing salmon and steelhead fisheries," according to Katherine K. Evatt, President of the Foothill Conservancy. Here is the action alert from Evatt, a tireless defender of the Mokelumne and its fish.
Urgent Action Alert:

The East Bay Municipal Utility District is proposing to build a new 400-foot dam on the Mokelumne River as part of its 2040 water plan. The dam will be yet another nail in the coffin of the Delta and our crashing salmon and steelhead fisheries. We need to increase freshwater inflow to the lower Mokelumne River for fish and the Delta, not divert more water upstream.

The New Pardee Reservoir contemplated in the plan will also flood about three miles of the upper Mokelumne River, including free-flowing river that is potential restoration habitat for salmon and steelhead. The threatened Middle Bar and Electra reaches are also home to a native rainbow trout fishery.

Since 1929, EBMUD has had its own version of the Peripheral Canal -- the twin Mokelumne Aqueducts that bring the East Bay 90 percent of its water from the Upper Mokelumne River, bypassing the lower river and the Delta. We cannot allow EBMUD to expand those diversions as the Delta and fisheries are on the brink.

CSPA is working with conservation, fish, river and recreation organizations who oppose this misguided dam plan. Our growing list of partners currently includes the Foothill Conservancy.Trout Unlimited, CalTrout, Friends of the River, American Whitewater, and Sierra Club SF Bay and Mother Lode chapters.

We need your help

We need everyone to speak up on behalf of the Mokelumne. And we need volunteers to help with a grassroots campaign in the East Bay. Can you spare a few minutes to help?

Come to EBMUD meetings or make calls: If you can come to upcoming EBMUD meetings in Oakland on July 14, July 28, or August 11, or make calls to help recruit others to the cause, please contact campaign field organizer Tim Robertson: tim [at] savethemoke.com or 510-712-8620 .

Write your EBMUD director: If you're an EBMUD ratepayer, please write a letter (snail mail) in your own words to your EBMUD director. Don't let them destroy more of the Mokelumne, the Delta and our fisheries in your name. For director names, ward information and mailing address, see EBMUD's website.
Send an e-mail to EBMUD: At the very least, please take time to send an e-mail to EBMUD expressing your outrage at this proposal and urging them to:

** Drop the Pardee expansion from the 2040 water management plan

** Endorse National Wild and Scenic River designation for the Mokelumne River from Salt Springs to the high pool of the existing Pardee Reservoir. Wild and Scenic River designation would protect the Mokelumne from new dams or diversions.
E-mails should be directed to llewis [at] ebmud.com, Lynelle Lewis, the EBMUD board clerk.

If mailing a physical letter:

President Doug Linney
East Bay Municipal Utility District
375 11th St.
Oakland, CA 94607-4240

You can also send E-mail using the form fill pages on the websites of the Foothill Conservancy or Friends of the River.

Revise the form text as you see fit but be sure to tell EBMUD it needs to restore, not further destroy, the Mokelumne, the Delta and our fisheries. And if you're an EBMUD customer, be sure to let EBMUD know.

For more information go to the websites of the Foothill Conservancy, Friends of the River or the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance.

Thanks for supporting California's fisheries!

Katherine K. Evatt, President
Foothill Conservancy
P.O. Box 1255
Pine Grove, CA 95665
kke [at] foothillconservancy.org
(209) 295-4900