Contract awarded for salmon and steelhead restoration project at Battle Creek hydropower project in California

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that the Bureau of Reclamation has awarded a $6.84 million contract under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 for Phase 1B of the Battle Creek Salmon and Steelhead Restoration Project to construct a tailrace connector and penstock bypass at the Inskip Powerhouse, part of Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s Battle Creek Hydroelectric Project.

The contract includes building a small bypass at Coleman Diversion Dam on the South Fork of Battle Creek. The project is in Shasta and Tehama counties near Manton, Calif.

The contract was awarded to RTA Construction of Redding, Calif. The restoration project will restore Chinook salmon and steelhead habitat along 48 miles of Battle Creek and its tributaries while maintaining continued production of hydroelectric power. Habitat restoration and enhancement will enable safe passage, growth and recovery of Central Valley spring-run Chinook salmon, Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon and Central Valley steelhead. All of the fish are listed as threatened or endangered. Construction is expected to begin in September.

“We look forward to the implementation of this phase of the major restoration effort,” said Secretary Salazar. “The project demonstrates that through cooperation, federal and state agencies, private industry and nonprofit organizations can restore fish species, while allowing continued production of renewable energy.”

The Battle Creek Restoration Project is a cooperative effort among the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service, California Department of Fish and Game, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, The Nature Conservancy, Battle Creek Watershed Conservancy and other agencies.

Recently, the Bureau of Reclamation’s Mid-Pacific Region awarded a $67 million contract under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for Phase II of the Red Bluff Fish Passage Improvement Project. Once completed, the facility will provide for improved fish passage through the existing Red Bluff Diversion Dam. The new diversion facility will be located on the Sacramento River about a mile upstream of the dam and two miles southeast of Red Bluff, Calif.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 year gave $3 billion to the Department of the Interior.

“With its investments of Recovery Act funds, the Department of the Interior and its bureaus are putting people to work today to make improvements that will benefit the environment and the region for many years to come,” Secretary Salazar said.

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