U.S. Department of the Interior Plans More Grand Canyon Floods

LAS VEGAS, Dec. 12 (UPI) — The U.S. Department of the Interior is planning more floods in the Grand Canyon, officials say.

The man-made floods are an attempt to restore conditions that existed in the canyon before the Glen Canyon Dam was completed in 1966, The Arizona Republic reports. The dam traps sediment formerly carried by the Colorado River, leading to the erosion of beaches in the Grand Canyon downstream.

Anne Castle, an assistant secretary in the department, told water managers this week at a meeting in Las Vegas that experiments with floods have shown they need to be frequent to do their work.

“We’ve put in place a comprehensive science program designed to figure out the complex processes at work downstream of Glen Canyon Dam,” Castle said Thursday. “We’ve learned that one of the best tools we have to benefit resources in the Grand Canyon is short-duration, high-flow releases.”

Environmental groups have been pushing for more frequent floods, while water managers and operators of hydroelectric dams say they disrupt operations.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Categorized | Hydroelectric
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