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Water Group: Augmentation no Help to Fish

by The Associated Press
The Idaho Statesman, December 22, 2001

Association says salmon recovery effort should end

Idaho´s largest water user group wants the Northwest Power Planning Council to drop the continued use of upper Snake River water as flow augmentation for salmon recovery.

Idaho Water Users Association Executive Director Norm Semanko called the augmentation a "failed experiment" that has been scientifically discredited and should be dropped from the council´s fish and wildlife program.

The regional council is revising the program and taking informal testimony.

It last considered augmentation in 1994 when it mistakenly thought that water released from Idaho reservoirs would create river flow conditions that would flush the young salmon smolts to the ocean, Semanko said.

Idaho has annually provided 427,000 acre feet of water to the program. The council´s amendments required an additional 1 million acre-feet from Idaho.

Semanko said seven years of augmentation have proven it has no effect on salmon recovery.

"The council originally suggested Upper Snake flow augmentation as an ´experiment´ to test the idea

The Associated Press
Water Group: Augmentation no Help to Fish
The Idaho Statesman, December 22, 2001

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