Monday, June 20, 2011


Battle Creek Salmon and Steelhead Restoration Project update - Shasta County & Tehama County, California USA.

(updated 26june2011)

Removal of 5 dams and installation of fish ladders on 4 other dams is intended to improve habitat for endangered salmon.

"Here at Battle Creek, an icy stream that tumbles off Mount Lassen, state and federal agencies are spending $128 million to bring endangered salmon back to 48 miles of water blocked by dams for nearly a century. At the same time, another arm of state government is allowing clear-cut logging on thousands of acres just upstream, which some scientists say could jeopardize the costly restoration project." (Troubled waters of Battle Creek - Sacramento Bee 19june2011)

Excessive clear-cut logging results in soil erosion that destroys the fish habitat in Battle Creek.

"By law, the cumulative impacts of similar logging projects in the same area must be analyzed, but this has been circumvented by using a subwatershed system, breaking the part of the watershed that SPI owns into smaller areas using the tributaries of Battle Creek, even though they all flow into Battle Creek. This is the basis of the misuse and avoidance of the laws and rules that, on paper, were supposed to stop excessive clear-cutting from happening." (Marily Woodhouse, Battle Creek Alliance)

"by subdividing the watershed into 9 subwatersheds each of the 16 timber harvest plans has been evaluated as if it were the only project. This is illegal as well as ecologically disastrous." (

"California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has been allowing Sierra Pacific Industries to clear-cut thousands of acres in the Battle Creek watershed. Scientists have found evidence that logging is contributing to erosion that has degraded spawning grounds in the creek. While Cal Fire officials say they've worked to buffer the creek from any logging sediment, they haven't yet analyzed the cumulative impacts of all the various clear cuts." (Editorial: Governor needs to keep pledge at Battle Creek - Sacramento Bee 21june2011)

" 'It makes no sense to be both restoring and destroying a river all at the same time – and at taxpayer expense,' said Glen Spain, regional director of the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermens Associations, a commercial fishing group and longtime supporter of the dam removals. .... The logging, under way mainly on land owned by Sierra Pacific Industries, complies with state law. But it occurs at a time when the state Department of Fish and Game no longer monitors affects on wildlife and aquatic habitat due to budget reductions and job cuts." (Groups ask Jerry Brown to protect Battle Creek watershed - Sacramento Bee 24june2011.)

Road map, topographic map and satellite map - Battle Creek watershed.

• Click and drag to reposition this interactive map. Map user instructions.
• The tool on the left zooms in and out. Point on the red markers to see their names.
• Map=roads. Satellite=satellite map. Terrain=3D shaded topo map. Topo=topographic map.
Full-Screen Maps - Battle Creek Restoration Project.

Geographic coordinates - landmark name (red marker on map).
N 40.51806 W 121.67667 - Viola, CA (A)
      - click on Satellite button and zoom in to see clear cut areas.
N 40.43516 W 121.86999 - Manton, CA (B)
N 40.41977 W 121.96060 - Wildcat Dam (C)
N 40.39572 W 121.88370 - Inskip Dam (D)
N 40.40095 W 121.96884 - Coleman Dam (E)
N 40.40199 W 122.12952 - Dam (F)
N 40.39781 W 122.14600 - Coleman Fish Hatchery (G)

Previous posts at BRT Insights:
Dam Removal and Salmon Restoration on Battle Creek, California - BRT Insights 30aug2008.
Dam Removal on Battle Creek could help reverse our salmon crisis - BRT Insights 31march2008.

For more information:
Battle Creek Watershed Conservancy - Salmon & Steelhead Restoration Project.
US Bureau of Reclamation - Battle Creek Salmon and Steelhead Restoration Project.
Battle Creek Alliance.
California Department of Fish and Game.
National Marine Fisheries Service Southwest Region - Salmon & Steelhead.
California River Conservation & Water Supply Policy.
Battle Creek Directory - Recreation & Conservation. Websites for the Battle Creek watershed. Display options - alphabetical 100. See section 1=kayaking-canoeing, 2=rafting-tubing, 3=environment-conservation, 4=fishing, 5=hiking-camping, 6=other-resources.

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