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Kiewit positions for Klamath dam pillage
Rex Cozzalio’s (member of SCWUA / Siskiyou County Water Users Association) recent letter of Jan. 18, 2019, reports on a presentation from Kiewit Infrastructure West, a potential lead contractor for the Klamath dam removal, to local subcontractors it could partner with in the future.
Below is Rex's original complete commentary for the Herald and News. Highlighted in yellow are the sections left out by Herald and News, 1/18/19
In their presentation to the public, Kiewit capitalizes on human nature using Klamath dams removal ‘Agreement’ KHSA/KRRC agenda rhetoric to market itself. Very smart, why not? Just as ‘Agreement’ signatories hold themselves harmless in forcing unrepresented regional loss, their ‘contractors’ also walk away from the majority of imposed devastation. Given that ‘agreed’ lack of consequence, marketing becomes easy, as it doesn’t matter how many unfulfilled promises are made.
A few pertinent points:
This ‘economic boon’ pays for Project destruction with YOUR money, taken by ‘Agreement’ benefitting signers who contribute NONE of their own. Even using their own severely limited ‘Agreed’ liability for damages, high end cost projections EXCEED ALL funds by 60 MILLION Dollars, with NO additional resources available to fill the void. At MOST, 5 PERCENT of your money is being allowed for “as-needed” local contractors, and at LEAST 5 PERCENT are dedicated to ‘Agreement’ signer special interests. 90 PERCENT of your money is allocated for; OUT OF AREA multi-national companies and KHSA/KRRC ‘agreed’ allowance; orchestrated creative marketing to elicit public consent; a manufactured massive indefinite ‘Definite Plan’ for securing FERC consent to known unfounded assumptions and ‘limited footprint obligation’; current insurance protecting ONLY THEMSELVES from liability; and intended additional insurance placing further legal and economic barriers between themselves and harmed residents, region, and environment.
‘Agreed’ KHSA/KRRC and Kiewit know their proclaimed ‘created jobs’ are TEMPORARY, and will COLLAPSE in several years following destruction of proven irreplaceable Project environmental enhancements and income resources. Despite ‘mandated’ migration of anadromous salmon to an area never known accessible in numbers, compromising other species, claims of fisheries ‘potential’ benefit are unsupportable, including Kiewit stated “spore bacteria.. flushed downstream” when PROVEN GREATER vectors are WAITING in Keno and Williamson for salmon disease to infect and compound down the ENTIRE Klamath. Salmon return statistics to the dams region indicate NO identifiable historic impact to salmon from Copco, and a INCREASE of 20% AFTER the much later addition of Iron Gate. Apparently confused, Kiewit’s ‘eliminating slow moving water’ (ONLY WITHIN the lakes that help MAINTAIN downstream late summer flows), is recited rhetoric not generally associated with “flushing spores”, but rather ‘toxic’ algae, which is also now being refuted. While historic footprints of targeted lakes were ALREADY naturally slow moving and partially impounded, retention by the deep water lakes is now proven to IMPROVE overall downstream water quality. In confirmed fact, they also DELAY transporting late summer naturally non-conducive Upper Klamath Lake water conditions downstream until generally LESS detrimental to migrating salmon. Regarding algae, new research on microcytis biology and downstream toxin surveys indicate the deep water lakes are likely DECREASING potential downstream generated microcystin toxicity. Even Kiewit wisely acknowledges “a lot of unknowns…risks and uncertainties”, particularly in the face of recent much smaller dams removals such as the Elwha and Condit in environments far more likely to succeed. Despite generic media claims for rewilding ‘benefit’ regardless of realized consequence, deeper research reveals massive and unaccountable public and private damage to those regions. And, as Kiewit said, “if it works” (are you Reassured?), WHERE’S the “INCREASED water” they claim for river and irrigators coming from AFTER the ONLY deep water Klamath lakes that provide PROVEN storage, power, irreplaceable recreation, fire protection, hatchery, habitat, and water quality improvements are destroyed?Supermajorities of the 2 most affected and knowledgeable counties voted against Project destruction. Recent ‘Interim’ studies and data, often unknowingly paid for by ratepayers, are actually now SUPPORTING voters’ knowledge of Project benefits. However, under KHSA ‘agenda’ constructed timeframe, that information will not be ‘reviewed’ until AFTER the Project is irreversibly destroyed. Now, working under the California Governor’s ‘water policy’ agenda pushing Klamath destruction, Water Resources just released a draft Environmental Impact Report hoping to convince FERC not to call for a full and open current NEPA investigation. They ‘concluded’ that ALL acknowledged impacts were ‘believed eventually beneficial’, with ALL inescapable detriments ‘determined’ lumped together and ‘outside their purview’, ‘perhaps’ to be addressed under some unknown ‘good neighbor’ agreement. In that ‘review’, they ONLY looked at extremely limited and outdated information approved by the KHSA/KRRC. It might be comical if it so many lives and futures were not inescapably suffering uncompensated loss. If FERC is convinced to approve this travesty given already known failed assumptions, faced with TWO ‘endangered’ species having conflicting environments and given ‘Agreement’ destroyed habitats harming both, even greater oppression and mandates will move into an ‘adaptively managed’ Upper Basin. Numerous reviewed, engineered, cost effective, and regionally consistent HOLISTIC options have been identified which enhance ALL beneficial uses. Better and far more certain to CONTINUE existing benefits, implement PROVEN known enhancements creating PERMANENT jobs at FRACTION of destruction cost WITHOUT risking regional unmitigated environmental and resident loss, RETURNING remaining money to we who funded it! Send FERC your opposition.
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