April 23, 2002
Lt. Col. Timothy ORourke
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
333 Market Street
San Francisco, CA 94105-2197
We want to bring two applications that have been filed with the State Water Resources Control Board to your attention: # 31194 for the Albion River and # 31195 for the Gualala River. These applications are for taking 10,000 acre feet per year from the Albion and 20,000 acre feet per year from the Gualala River to be shipped to San Diego.
Both applications call for subsurface intake structures and 24 pipelines buried five feet deep below the river beds as well as for off-shore mooring and filling facilities. In the case of the Gualala River, one intake structure is projected to be at least 1.5 miles from the river mouth to avoid saltwater intake.
It is our opinion that both the construction and maintenance of these facilities will have a negative impact on the survival and recovery of our local steelhead and coho. Both the off-shore mooring structures and the heavy barge traffic for towing 800-foot long plastic bags will interfere with the seasonal southward and northward migration of gray whales.
Since we heard about these pending applications, Friends of the Gualala River has had a significant increase in membership – a sure sign of the local opposition to the water export scheme because of concern for our river. We would like to be put on your mailing list for project applications in coastal Sonoma and Mendocino counties.
Friends of the Gualala River
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer
U.S Representative Lynn Wolsey
State Senator Wes Chesbro
Assemblywoman Pat Wiggins
California Coastal Commission
Sonoma County Board of Supervisors
Mendocino County Board of Supervisors