Beginning on Monday, April 14 the Bureau of Reclamation began increasing releases from Goodwin Dam into the Stanislaus River to benefit Stanislaus River steelhead and San Joaquin River Chinook salmon. Goodwin Dam is located downstream from Tulloch Dam and New Melones Dam and Reservoir, features of the Central Valley Project.
The releases (pulse flows) began to increase from 600 cubic feet per second at 4 a.m. by about 250 cfs every two hours to 2,500 cfs at 4 p.m. These releases will be maintained for approximately 16 days, but this may vary depending upon downstream conditions. On about April 30, releases will decrease to a rate yet to be determined.
People recreating in or along the Stanislaus River downstream from Goodwin Dam to the confluence of the San Joaquin and Stanislaus Rivers should take safety precautions with the increased flows.
This pulse flow is being implemented in accordance with the action described in the CVP and State Water Project Drought Operations Plan to meet requirements in the National Marine Fisheries Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Biological Opinions and assist in meeting San Joaquin River at Vernalis flow objectives. The operations are targeting a higher Vernalis pulse flow period of about 16 days followed by a lower Vernalis pulse flow period for about 15 days. The Drought Operations Plan may be viewed at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/drought/index.html or http://www.ca.gov/drought/managementactions.html.
The California Department of Water Resources, USFWS, NMFS, California Department of Fish and Wildlife and State Water Resources Control Board coordinated with Reclamation in developing these operations.
Daily information on expected flows in the Stanislaus River can be found on the California Data Exchange Center website at http://cdec.water.ca.gov./queryRes.html or from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website at http://www.spk-wc.usace.army.mil/plots/california.html. For more information on the Stanislaus River, please visit Reclamation’s Central Valley Operation Office website at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/cvo.