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Published July 09, 2010, 08:43 AM

Formal reviews start on Klamath dam removal

KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — State and federal officials have started the formal environmental and economic reviews of plans to remove dams on the Klamath River, and a related plan to give upper Klamath Basin farmers greater certainty over irrigation water.

KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — State and federal officials have started the formal environmental and economic reviews of plans to remove dams on the Klamath River, and a related plan to give upper Klamath Basin farmers greater certainty over irrigation water.

Hearings around the region began Wednesday in Northern California and continue through July 15.

At issue are a pair of landmark agreements. One lays out a roadmap for removing hydroelectric dams on the upper Klamath River that block salmon. The other details how to share water between fish and farms and restore the ecological balance of the basin.

The conflict came to a head in 2001 when drought forced irrigation shutoffs to protect salmon. After irrigation was restored, tens of thousands of salmon died.

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