Oroville Dam

Waterbaby

Moderator
Staff member
#64
http://www.breitbart.com/california...fornia-snowmelt-crisis-temps-rise-75-degrees/

Northern California Snowmelt Crisis as Temps Rise into 70s


Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press

by Chriss W. Street26 Feb 2017Newport Beach, CA

Northern California will face a new flood crisis for Oroville Dam and Shasta Dam, as 10 days of up to 75 degree weather will spark an early spring snowmelt.

With the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) rating over 90 percent of California as experiencing an “Extreme Water Year,” the media are welcoming sunny skies that are expected to spike Northern California valley temperatures to 75 degrees or higher.

Because hundreds of smaller dams in Northern California have been allowed to fill, water runoff for the Sacramento Valley from Sierra Nevada-fed rivers is running at 130 percent of average for this time of year; versus rivers flowing into the San Joaquin Valley, which are running at 190 percent of average runoff.

But as temperatures rise to 65 degrees in mid-mountain elevations at the 6–8,000 foot levels that received 3 feet of snow in the last set of storms, 13-degree-above-average temperatures are about to trigger an early spring snowmelt, according to Paul Preston of Agenda 21 Radio News, who has been broadcasting continuously from Oroville Dam during the last month.

The Feather River below Oroville Dam that is holding back up to 3.5 million acre feet of water is currently running at 196 percent of average for this time of year. The Sacramento River, below the much bigger Shasta Dam, which holds back up to 4.5 million acre feet of water, is running at 156 percent of average.

Almost completely ignored during the crisis mass evacuations in reaction to the potential failure of Oroville Dam, the water levels rose to within 11 feet of Shasta Dam’s 602-foot-high emergency spillway, despite running Shasta’s lower water release gates at full-blast since January 16. U.S. Bureau of Reclamation engineers were forced to open the upper flood gates for 15 minutes on February 23 for the first time in two decades. With the sun coming out on Saturday afternoon, the water level at Shasta’s Dam had fallen by 3.99 feet.

Breitbart News reported that to prevent Oroville Dam from massively pouring over its emergency spillway and flooding over 1 million people in the Sacramento Valley, the 9 smaller supporting dams on the Feather River were allowed to fill up. During the same period, engineers allowed the 5 smaller dams that support Shasta Dam to fill up as well.

But Shasta Dam was originally designed to be 804 feet high and hold back 13.9 million acre feet of water, because it blocked the water flows from the Pit, McCloud, and Sacramento rivers. Built during by the federal government during World War II for the duel purpose of providing flood control and electrical generation to California aviation factories, wartime material shortages prevented adding the dam’s top 200 feet.

Fully aware that Shasta Dam is not tall enough to handle the type of 100-year flood that California may currently be facing, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has proposed $1.1 billion to raise the height of Shasta Dam by 18.5 feet to increase water storage by 14 percent. But the Obama administration killed the project in 2014 by filing a 349-page report claiming expansion was a threat to salmon under the U. S. Endangered Species Act.

Breitbart News reported that despite Gov. Jerry Brown campaigning for the $7.5 billion Proposition 1 Water Bond to provide new dams and flood control in 2014, he moved in April 2016 to redirect $250 million to re-wild the Klamath River by tearing down 4 hydro-electric dams.

But facing political blow-back from having ordered the evacuation of 188,000 people during the near-collapse of Oroville Dam, and fearing an early spring snowmelt, Gov. Brown on February 24 asked the Democrat-controlled California Legislature to spend $50 million in existing general fund money, plus $387 million from the Proposition 1 fund, on emergency flood control efforts, according to the Sacramento Bee.
 

Bill Sampson

Well-Known Member
#66
I'm jealous! Miss skiing and I loved skiing at Mammoth...
We spent 3 great days at Mammoth. The snow is some of the best that I have ever seen there. The city's biggest problem is getting rid of the snow. The guy at the hardware store was telling me that most of the minimum wage earners in the city quit their jobs and are in the snow removal business for $25.00 per hour. I constantly saw 40 foot end dump trucks hauling snow out of the city. There is no more storage space there for it. People who own homes or time share condominiums have to schedule snow removal before they get there, or they cannot get into their residence. The snow is 20 feet tall around the residences there.
 

Gem Morris

Well-Known Member
#67
I met a guy in Utah who had what I thought was a pretty unique business - we met at a gas station where we were both pumping diesel into our trucks and got to talking. He has a contract with the Park City Ski Resort. He clears the parking lot of snow, dumps it into a diesel powered heater of some sort (think an 18 wheeler tanker), melts the snow and pours the resulting water down the city's storm drain system.
 

Waterbaby

Moderator
Staff member
#68
We spent 3 great days at Mammoth. The snow is some of the best that I have ever seen there. The city's biggest problem is getting rid of the snow. The guy at the hardware store was telling me that most of the minimum wage earners in the city quit their jobs and are in the snow removal business for $25.00 per hour. I constantly saw 40 foot end dump trucks hauling snow out of the city. There is no more storage space there for it. People who own homes or time share condominiums have to schedule snow removal before they get there, or they cannot get into their residence. The snow is 20 feet tall around the residences there.

Shades of the Mammoth in the 60's [snow wise]..... George talked about the ski club being stranded there when a big storm came in one weekend and buried the ski-buses under the snowfall. So how was it on the lifts? I can remember the chairs practically sitting in the snow at one big Christmas storm we were there. made getting on the lifts interesting for a few days til they could dig them out a bit.
 

Bill Sampson

Well-Known Member
#69
Shades of the Mammoth in the 60's [snow wise]..... George talked about the ski club being stranded there when a big storm came in one weekend and buried the ski-buses under the snowfall. So how was it on the lifts? I can remember the chairs practically sitting in the snow at one big Christmas storm we were there. made getting on the lifts interesting for a few days til they could dig them out a bit.
The lifts were all dug out, so there were no problems. Sometimes you really had to squat down to sit on the chairs, as there was not a lot of clearance.
 

Waterbaby

Moderator
Staff member
#71
https://t.co/ZkXS9opEDY

Oroville Dam repair costs soar past $1 billion

SEP 05, 2018 | 9:35 PM


Construction crews work on the main spillway of the Oroville Dam on Oct. 19, 2017. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

Fixing the Oroville Dam spillway wrecked by storms in 2017 will cost $1.1 billion — a $455-million hike from initial estimates — the state Department of Water Resources announced Wednesday.

The swelling cost can be blamed on design changes that have been made over the last 16 months and damage to the facility near Oroville, Calif., that was far more extensive than initially presumed, the department said.

The Department of Water Resources designed the repairs and issued a contract to Kiewit Corp. in April 2017 based on an estimate that the company could perform the work for $275 million. But the cost of that portion of the project has shot up to $630 million. In addition, the department’s internal costs have grown by $100 million, reaching $310 million. The agency also paid $160 million in emergency response costs, including removing sediment and installing temporary power lines.

In total, the cost of getting the spillway repaired and upgraded has gone up by about $1 million every day since April 2017.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is supposed to pay for 75% of the repair costs, leaving the other 25% to agencies in the State Water Project. That would leave customers of water agencies such as the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which serves the city of Los Angeles, on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars. A Metropolitan Water District spokesman referred questions about those costs back to the state Department of Water Resources.

The biggest cost of the spillway failure could be legal claims from affected residents and businesses that have been mounting against the Department of Water Resources, seeking billions of dollars in damages allegedly caused by the agency’s management of the dam and the near-catastrophe at the facility.

After a series of powerful storms in February 2017 slammed the Feather River watershed, the lake behind the Oroville Dam filled up and forced operators to open the gates to the 3,000-foot-long spillway — sending down more water at freeway speeds than flows on average over Niagara Falls.

The spillway began breaking apart when releases hit 55,000 cubic feet of water per second, a small fraction of its designed capacity. That triggered an evacuation of 188,000 residents who lived downstream.

An independent investigation found that the 1960s-era spillway had numerous defects, such as thin concrete, poor anchors to the underlying rock and a weak rock base. It allowed the rushing water to lift the concrete sections and scour the underlying foundation. One of the craters left by the water was 80 feet deep.

The report also found that human error contributed to the operational and maintenance problems that preceded the emergency.
The new spillway will have concrete slabs thicker than an airport runway, reinforcement rods and thousands of anchors epoxied at least 15 feet deep into rock — all intended to make it significantly stronger than the original design.

Department of Water Resources spokeswoman Erin Mellon said the Kiewitt contract was issued when only 30% of the design work had been completed, based on unknown geology and unknown amounts of materials that would be needed. The forensic engineering investigation into the causes of the accident was still incomplete, and the repairs had to move at emergency speed to protect public safety, she said.
Mellon said the $1.1-billion cost is still subject to change, meaning more increases could be coming. The original contract, she said, did not contain a contingency that construction agreements often have to cover unexpected cost increases.

The original spillway cost $13.7 million when completed in 1968, which would be about $101 million adjusted for inflation to 2018 dollars. That means the repairs are on pace to cost 10 times more than the construction itself.

Robert Bea, a retired UC Berkeley civil engineer and member of the National Academy of Engineering, said such repairs to a heavy structure can easily surpass the cost of building a new one. Tons of debris had to be removed from the hillside and riverbed, the work had to be performed in stages, and the new spillway will be significantly stronger than the original.

Even after the spillway fixes are completed, the dam’s gate structures will remain seriously compromised, posing up to another $1 billion in repairs, Bea said.

Apart from fixing the dam, the state is also facing billions of dollars in legal claims by residents and businesses who were evacuated.
A lawsuit filed on behalf of 42 individuals, businesses and farms by the law firm of Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy alleges millions of dollars in damages from mismanagement and defects in the Oroville Dam. The firm has another suit representing the city of Oroville as well as one seeking class-action status, said Eric J. Buescher, an attorney at the firm.

Buescher said downriver property owners have suffered a loss of property value because they are now vulnerable to a dam that has decades of deferred maintenance. “The fact that the state has a $1-billion repair to the spillway reflects years of deferred maintenance,” he said.
Butte County Dist. Atty. Michael Ramsey has filed suit against the state seeking tens of billions of dollars for damages caused by debris that was sent into the Feather River when the spillway broke up.
 

Bill Sampson

Well-Known Member
#73
I remember that money throughout the years has been scheduled for maintenance on this dam, but it has been re-appropriated. Government strikes again.
 
#75
There is nobody anywhere that can tell you more about the Oroville Dam than Juan Brown of the YouTube "blancolirio" channel. He provides Oroville updates about once a month and his last one was only a couple of days ago. If you go to his channel, you can watch every report he's ever made about the Oroville Dam. They are quite interesting. Here is the latest one he's done:


He has 100 or more videos on the whole thing that provide much informationi.
 

Waterbaby

Moderator
Staff member
#76
Very interesting and informative report. I found it interesting even though it is not a Federal dam Fema has been reimbursing them for the costs [up to 75%] and just as he pointed out at the very end how dishonest the media reports on the dam are - when I looked up FEMA and Orville Dam what do I get - California Congressmen were raising red flags that FEMA wouldn't "repay" them for these costs - when in this report he points out FEMA has been paying them right along as they submit the bills. Not just the media giving out incorrect stories. So a State Dam is damaged and FEMA [aka taxpayers] are still on the hook. Which makes me not happy that it wasn't constructed in a manner to be able to withstand the massive waterload of two years ago. JMHO mind you.
 
Top