After a big protest by the Yurok, Karuk and Hoopa Valley Tribes and their supporters at the Bureau of Reclamation offices in Sacramento on August 19, Reclamation announced on Friday, August 22, that it would release additional water from Trinity Reservoir to supplement flows in the lower Klamath River to help protect the returning run of adult Chinook salmon from a devastating fish kill.
“We have determined that unprecedented conditions over the past few weeks in the lower Klamath River require us to take emergency measures to help reduce the potential for a large-scale fish die-off,” said Mid-Pacific Regional Director David Murillo in a news release and at a conference call with reporters. “This decision was made based on science and after consultation with Tribes, water and power users, federal and state fish regulatory agencies, and others.”
Hoopa Valley Tribal Chair Danielle Vigil-Masten hailed the decision, stating, “The Hoopa Tribe basically dropped everything they were working on to address this issue. The right thing for Secretary Jewell to do was to fulfill her trust responsibility to the Hoopa Valley and Yurok Tribes. This is an essential first step.”