Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Next Step - Raising Money for Ten Fish Screens

November 8, 2009

Now that salmon can pretty much get to Lincoln, the next step is to get them back to the Pacific if and when they spawn. Between the Sac River and Lincoln, starting at the lower end moving upstream, the Auburn Ravine contains eight diversion dams: 1)Coppin, 2)Davis, 3)Tom Glenn, 4)Lincoln Ranch Duck Club, 5)Aitken Ranch, 6)Moore, 7)Nelson Dams and the 8)Lincoln Gaging Station. Please memorize these eight names.

In order for the fish returning to the Pacific to spend 3-5 years maturing, they must not be entrained into rice fields, pastures and other ag fields through the canals that divert water. Without screens on these diversions, the fish will end up in fields and die. These diversion canals must be screened so that the fish can stay in the Auburn Ravine to reach the Sac River and continue their odyssey to SF Bay and the open waters of the Pacific.

I am asking for your thinking and input on this plan. We are working with Brad Arnold of South Sutter Water District to get his Board’s commitment to begin screening the Coppin, Tom Glenn, and Aitken Ranch dams. We are working with Rich Arruda on the Lincoln Ranch Duck Club Dam. I will work with Don Tanner to gain access to the Moore and Nelson dams to contact the owners. Most of the eight dams have one diversion canal with the Davis Dam having three. So we are probably talking about at least ten screens needed and there may be multiple diversions on the Moore and Nelson Dams.

What I am thinking about is creating a community outreach program that secures one business in Auburn and/or Lincoln to adopt a diversion canal and raise money to pay for one screen. SARSAS will not ask the business to contribute any money itself but to find a way to raise money. The average cost Tim Buller told me would be $300,000 per screen, but Ron Ott believes many would cost much less. We would need at least ten businesses, each adopting a screen to make the plan work. How can businesses raise funds?

Ron Ott will be giving his presentation on Friday, November 13, at 9a.m. at John Rabe’s home, 980 Stonewood, Newcastle, CA 95658, to help us decide what type of screen is best for each diversion canal and what each screen costs. Please try to attend because our next major task is to become knowledgeable about screens and their costs. Then we can implement this plan.

What we need now is a name for the plan, i.e. Invite a Salmon to the Pacific, Send a Salmon Home, This is My Salmon … some name we all agree on. Then how do we do outreach to the communities to secure business sponsors, and what will SARSAS’ role be? Board Member Kathleen Harris of Harris Industrial Gasses likes the idea and is already working on some details.

No idea is too outlandish. We are brainstorming now so send me all your ideas.
Please contact us at P O Bx 4269, Auburn CA95604, or 530 888 0281.

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