I was going to post about the Nigerian oil spill in my continued meditation on environmental disasters in the recent years BUT its Christmas weekend eve. So instead I am posting a happy event. The White River is now free flowing after they punched a hole in the Condit Dam and this spring salmon will flow down the White River for the first time in 100 years. Merry Christmas to those who celebrate it and Happy Holidays to the rest.
For text see:
Condit Dam Removal Project
Condit Dam was breached a little after Noon on Wednesday, October 26, 2011. During the event approximately 750 acre feet of water was drained into the White Salmon River downstream of the dam and into the Columbia River. Flows from the breach of the dam are anticipated to transport a plume of accumulated sediment from the reservoir causing turbid water.
Over the course of the next 10 months, dam removal will be conducted and restoration of the former reservoir area completed.
See more project info on the Pacificorp website.
The Condit Hydroelectric Project is located 3.3 miles upstream from the confluence of the White Salmon and Columbia Rivers. Constructed between 1911 and 1913 by Northwestern Electric Company it has been operated by PacifiCorp since 1947. PacifiCorp has chosen to remove the dam rather than seek fish passage required under a new federal dam license.
The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) conducted necessary environmental reviews and issued regulatory approvals associated with the project, including granting a Section 401 Water Quality Certification. The 401 certification under the federal Clean Water Act certifies that water quality standards and other water-protection regulations are met during dam removal and subsequent restoration. The 401 outlines the steps PacifiCorp must take to protect water quality during dam removal.
Go there, view and read. More next week.