“This week, after seven years of opposition to a hydropower proposal put forth by the Snohomish County Public Utility District (SnoPUD) for the South Fork Skykomish River, local activists, tribes, paddlers, river recreationists, and anglers got some good news at the April 10 SnoPUD meeting, when the SnoPUD commission and staff agreed to cancel the Sunset Falls hydropower project and request the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to close the docket on the current application.”
Finally! Falls would have been reduced to a trickle if hydro project approved.
“It’s a big deal,” said Dawn Wellman, sector manager for environmental health and remediation at the national lab in Richland. “At a scaled version we have done what they will do at full scale at Hanford.”
The vitrification plant — or Waste Treatment Plant — at the Hanford nuclear reservation has been under construction since 2002, with a court-ordered deadline of 2023 to start treating some of the 56 million gallons of radioactive waste in underground tanks.
Much of the waste, which is left from the past production of plutonium for the nation’s nuclear weapons program, is planned to be vitrified, or turned into a solid glass form for disposal.”
“The complex, unique geology of the Los Angeles Basin, with its interlocking and overlapping ridges and valleys, resulted in a wildly unpredictable river that often sent torrents of water tearing over its banks.
Not long after California became a state in 1851, the water needs of a booming population stressed the Los Angeles River to its breaking point. Meanwhile, the fitful river endangered the settlements multiplying throughout the floodplain. After catastrophic floods in 1914, 1934, and 1938, the city, at the recommendation of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, agreed to straighten the riverbed and pave it with concrete, deracinating whatever plant and animal wildlife was left. A complex of aqueducts, dams, and reservoirs was built to import most of the city’s water; today, it delivers about 430 million gallons daily.”
Restoration of this watershed is a priority to many who live in and around LA.
“Now, as global warming steadily melts glaciers and polar ice sheets, quickening the pace of sea level rise, scientists say that a severe shortage of river-borne sediment — most of it trapped behind dams — will increasingly be felt along the world’s coasts.”
“The Klamath River project will be the most significant dam removal and river restoration effort yet. Never before have four dams of this size been removed at once which inundate as many miles of habitat (4 square miles and 15 miles of river length), involving this magnitude of budget (approximately $397 million) and infrastructure.
But perhaps more important than the size of the dams is the amount of collaboration and the decades of hard work that have made this project possible. American Rivers has been fighting to remove the dams since 2000. And thanks to the combined efforts of the Karuk and Yurok tribes, irrigators, commercial fishing interests, conservationists, and many others, our goal of a free-flowing river is now within reach.”
Biggest dam removal ever! Klamath was largest salmon producer until dams interrupted reproduction cycles.
Republican Gov. Mike Parson, who was sworn in on June 1 after the resignation of Gov. Eric Greitens, approved the proposal championed by Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City.
The measure will allocate $150,000 annually to the Department of Natural Resources to probe sites like the West Lake Landfill in north St. Louis County, where radioactive material was dumped more than 40 years ago.
“What is usually referred to as nuclear waste is used nuclear fuel in the shape of rods about 12 feet long. For four and a half years, the uranium atoms that comprise the fuel rods are split apart to give off the heat that turns water into steam to spin turbines to make electricity. After that, nuclear plant workers move the used fuel rods into pools of water to cool.”