Deal Brokered for Biggest Dam Removal Project in U.S.

Officials have brokered a deal to remove dams from the Klamath River in the Pacific Northwest -- a plan intended to counteract sharp declines in salmon counts and appease environmentalists. But the plan is also meeting criticism.

Read Time: 2 minutes

November 17, 2008, 6:00 AM PST

By Nate Berg


"The deal, which could require fiscally strapped California to finance $250 million of the demolition costs, came under immediate attack from foes who called it a scheme riddled with loopholes that favor farmers and other allies of the outgoing president."

"The agreement in principal was signed by officials from the Department of the Interior, the states of California and Oregon, and PacifiCorp, the Portland, Ore., utility that owns the dams. It commits all sides to work toward dam removal by 2020."

"The river has been the focus of a long and volatile water war pitting the needs of farmers against the survival of endangered fish. Howls of protest erupted when authorities shut off irrigation deliveries during the drought of 2001. Restoration of those diversions in 2002 was blamed for the deaths of 70,000 adult salmon returning to spawn."

"In the years since, conditions on the Klamath River have been implicated in a steep salmon decline that has undercut the West Coast commercial fishing industry."

"A final agreement is to be signed by June 30. That would launch an intense scientific and economic analysis to determine if dam removal is feasible and cost-effective, a process to be concluded with a decision by the Interior secretary in March 2012."

"The deal also calls on Congress to approve a $1-billion restoration package for the river basin that won broad support in the region earlier this year. Some environmental groups say that accord bends too far to deliver abundant water and cheap power to farmers."

Friday, November 14, 2008 in Los Angeles Times

Green bike lane with flexible delineators and textures paint in Hoboken, New Jersey

America’s Best New Bike Lanes

PeopleForBikes highlights some of the most exciting new bike infrastructure projects completed in 2022.

January 31, 2023 - PeopleforBikes

Aerial view of MBTA commuter rail station in Concord, Massachusetts among green trees

Massachusetts Zoning Reform Law Reaches First Deadline

Cities and towns had until January 31 to submit their draft plans for rezoning areas near transit stations to comply with a new state law.

February 1, 2023 - Streetsblog Mass

Green alley under construction

Green Alleys: A New Paradigm for Stormwater Management

Rather than shuttling stormwater away from the city and into the ocean as quickly as possible, Los Angeles is now—slowly—moving toward a ‘city-as-sponge’ approach that would capture and reclaim more water to recharge crucial reservoirs.

February 2, 2023 - Curbed

Covered pergolas for outdoor dining line the curb on Ballard Avenue, Seattle

Seattle Historic District Could Remove Street Dining

Despite the popularity of Ballard Avenue’s outdoor dining pergolas, some district board members argue the patios don’t match the district’s historic character.

February 7 - The Urbanist

Rendering of landscaped street with street trees and pedestrian sidewalk

South L.A. Complete Streets Project Back on Track

First proposed in 2015, the Broadway-Manchester redesign would add bike infrastructure, pedestrian improvements, trees, and other amenities.

February 7 - Urbanize LA

Spanish-style State Street commercial buildings in downtown Santa Barbara, California

Santa Barbara Expands ADU Program to Boost Housing

The city hopes that permitting larger ADUs and making adaptive reuse easier will help it meet its state-mandated goal of building over 8,000 new housing units by 2031.

February 7 - Noozhawk

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.