What’s Next for Eel River Dams?

In this week’s edition of the EcoNews Report, Friends of the Eel River discuss developments in the thrilling drama of Eel River dam removal. It’s a story of injustice and opportunity— a 100-year-old water diversion that takes from one watershed to give to another, and the chance to correct the harms by returning salmon and … Read more

Action Alert: Ask FERC to Initiate License Surrender for Eel River Dams

Background The Two Basin Partnership reported to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that they will not submit an application to relicense the Potter Valley Project and its two dams on the upper Eel River. Project owner Pacific Gas and Electric withdrew its own relicensing application in 2019. FERC must now order PG&E to begin … Read more

Dam Safety Series: Faults

Closeup of Bartlett Springs Fault from USGS

Hold PG&E At Fault Underlying issues threatening Scott Dam Scott Dam’s proximity to the Bartlett Springs Fault is a major safety concern. The Bartlett Springs fault was not identified by geologists as “a regionally significant seismic source” until the 1980s, nearly sixty years after Scott Dam was constructed. Scott Dam is not only old, outdated, … Read more

Letter to California Public Utilities Commission Regarding PVP Equipment Failure

Wednesday, October 27, 2021 President Marybel Batjer California Public Utilities Commission 505 Van Ness Avenue San Francisco, CA 94102 via electronic mail as feasible   RE: Potter Valley Project Equipment Failure Dear President Batjer, This letter is meant to apprise you of important developments regarding PG&E’s Potter Valley Project (Project). The Project is a hydroelectric … Read more

Dam Safety Series: Aging Structure

Dams and the Consequences of Time Dam safety concerns of Scott Dam’s aging structure This year Scott Dam turned 100 years old, and as is the case with any century-old infrastructure, there are some concerns about its safety. Cape Horn Dam, 12 miles downstream, is 114 years old. Both were designed during a time when … Read more

Eel River Wins Before FERC

In a setback to the Two Basin Partnership — which sought to gain control over the two fish-blocking dams on the Eel River — FERC denied a request for a delay by the coalition, damaging their chances at gaining control (and forestalling decommissioning of the dams). Friends of the Eel River think that this is … Read more

Potter Valley Project Surrender and Decommissioning the Best Path for Eel River Fisheries

September 9, 2021 Contact: Alicia Hamann, alicia(at)eelriver.org Scott Greacen, scott(at)eelriver.org Potter Valley Project Surrender and Decommissioning the Best Path for Eel River Fisheries The Two Basin Partnership should withdraw their Notice of Intent to relicense and support the quickest and surest path to dam removal on the Eel River. Friends of the Eel … Read more

Dam Safety Series: Sediment

Restorative Vision for the Upper Eel River

A Much Bigger Problem – More ways poor design impacts dam safety at Scott Dam Decreased water storage, high temperatures, and evapotranspiration cause the sediment that has piled up in steep banks behind Scott Dam to dry out and slough off, threatening to irreparably clog the ‘needle valve’ which is the only way to release … Read more

Working today for a better tomorrow

Dear Friend, Restoring fish access to the Eel River’s headwaters by removing the Potter Valley Project dams. Protecting the rare and spectacular summer steelhead. Safeguarding public trust values. Adapting to climate change and sea level rise. At Friends of the Eel River, we are working on some huge tasks these days, and are honored to … Read more