Cape Horn Dam Fish Ladder is Inadequate

Cape Horn fish ladder clogged with gravel and debris after high flows.

Amidst the tumultuous relicensing, auction, bankruptcy, and withdrawal developments for the Eel River dams, attention has largely centered around the most problematic of the two – Scott Dam, which is structurally unsound and has zero fish passage. However, while there is a fish ladder at the Van Arsdale Fish Station at Cape Horn Dam, recent … Read more

Some Clarity At Last – PG&E Ends Dam Relicensing, Sale

We have great news for the Eel River and its fisheries. Days before entering bankruptcy, utility giant PG&E withdrew its application to relicense the Potter Valley Project and ended its attempt to sell the project, which includes two dams on the upper mainstem Eel River. Friends of the Eel River has been working for decades … Read more

Friends of the Eel River Welcomes PG&E’s Abandonment of Eel River Dams Relicensing Application

(Eureka) Friends of the Eel River welcomes today’s announcement by PG&E that the utility is withdrawing its formal notice of intent to seek relicensing of the Potter Valley Project (PVP) before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and ceasing its efforts to sell off the two dams and associated diversion works. The two dams and … Read more

BREAKING NEWS: Pacific Gas and Electric Withdraws “Notice of Intent to File License Application”

From Pacific Gas and Electric: NOTICE OF WITHDRAWAL OF NOTICE OF INTENT TO FILE LICENSE APPLICATION AND PRE–APPLICATION DOCUMENT On April 6, 2017, pursuant to 18 C.F.R. §§ 5.5 and 5.6, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (“PG&E”), filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“Commission”) notice of its intent to file an application for a … Read more

PG&E Moves To Auction Off Eel River Dams Amid Growing Seismic Safety Concerns

Geologic Map Gravelly Valley

Utility Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) began seeking potential buyers today for two aging dams on the upper Eel River, even as new questions emerge about the vulnerability of the larger dam to seismic shocks. A conservation group working to remove the dams released a technical analysis today that identifies an active landslide above the … Read more

Obscure joint powers authority makes play to buy the fish-killing Eel River dams

Mendocino County water interests are moving forward with an attempt to buy the Eel River dams. If they succeed, they will only plant the seeds of a conflict that will last until the Eel River’s fish are gone or the dams come down. Ever since PG&E announced its intent to unload the two aging dams … Read more

Inspiration and Hope Amidst Troubling Times

With such grim news coming from the national and international political and climate fronts these days, it can be difficult to appreciate the progress we are making. Here at Friends of the Eel River, we’re heartbroken and outraged by the atrocities currently being committed in America’s name, but we’re also damn proud of the work … Read more

Local Government Transparency a Big Problem

“The key piece of this whole scheme, is that you get out from under the requirement to provide fish passage over Scott dam” Tom Wheeler, Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Information Center, hosts a discussion with Friends of the Eel River Conservation Director Scott Greacen about Humboldt County’s position on the Eel River dams … Read more

Is the Future of Eel River Dams Being Decided Behind Closed Doors?

Tune in for a discussion of the fate of the Eel River dams that highlights more questions than answers.  Pacific Gas and Electric made headlines last week when they announced, during the Eel Russian River Commission (ERRC) meeting, their intention to sell or surrender the Eel River dams. The Commission then began a discussion of … Read more

Eel River Dams (de)licensing Update

Potter Valley Project map

Every thirty to fifty years, hydropower projects get relicensed. Everyone knows that hydroelectric power is clean power, dams are good for rivers and fish, and even old dams never suffer any serious failures. So we should keep them all! At least, that appears to be how the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) thinks. The agency … Read more