February 3, 2017

DWR and USBOR release public review draft Initial Study and Environmental Assessment (IS/EA) for the proposed Fremont Weir Adult Fish Passage Modification Project

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) have released for public review the draft Initial Study and Environmental Assessment (IS/EA) for the proposed Fremont Weir Adult Fish Passage Modification Project, located in the northern portion of the Yolo Bypass, approximately 8 miles northeast of Woodland in Yolo County.

The proposed project is being carried out to meet requirements in the 2009 National Marine Fisheries Service’s Biological Opinion and Conference Opinion on the Long-Term Operations of the Central Valley Project and State Water Project. The Yolo Bypass, a prominent feature of California’s State Plan of Flood Control, provides valuable rearing habitat for downstream migrating juvenile salmon while also providing a fish migration corridor for adult anadromous fish. Structures within the Yolo Bypass have delayed and prevented adult special-status fish species, such as Chinook salmon, steelhead, and green sturgeon from migrating upstream through the Yolo Bypass and returning to the Sacramento River.

The purpose of the proposed project is to improve fish passage at the Fremont Weir and within the Tule Canal. The project would modify an existing fish ladder at the Fremont Weir and improve fish passage within the channel both upstream and downstream of the Fremont Weir. In addition, one downstream agricultural road crossing would be removed and another such crossing would be replaced with a structure that provides improved fish passage within the Tule Canal. Construction is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2017.

The proposed Mitigated Negative Declaration and draft IS/EA have been prepared in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act and the National Environmental Policy Act and are available for public review and comment from February 3 through March 6, 2017. Copies of the documents are available at:

Please submit comments in writing or email to either:

  • Karen Enstrom, California Department of Water Resources, 3500 Industrial Blvd., West Sacramento, CA 95691 or Karen.Enstrom@water.ca.gov.
  • Ben Nelson, Bureau of Reclamation, Bay-Delta Office, 801 I St., Suite 140, Sacramento, CA 95814 or bcnelson@usbr.gov.

Written comments must be received by close of business Monday, March 6, 2017. For further information, please contact Karen Enstrom at (916) 376-9778 or Karen.Enstrom@water.ca.gov or Ben Nelson at (916) 414-2424 (TTY 800-877-8339) or bcnelson@usbr.gov.