The federal government wants to know what you think about its draft plan to build a large, new reservoir above Millerton Lake on the San Joaquin River. Officials are coming to Fresno Thursday night to hear it.
The meeting is from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Piccadilly Inn, 2305 West Shaw Ave. The material might seem familiar – the idea of building Temperance Flat Reservoir has the rounds a few times. My most recent story about it was last month.
Activists say they don’t think the $2.6 billion project pencils out. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation says it does, mostly because nearly half the benefit would be for river restoration, including rebuilding salmon runs.
The draft environmental impact statement says Temperance Flat Reservoir would be built 6.8 miles upstream of Friant Dam near Fine Gold Creek, partially inside the back end of 520,000 acre-foot Millerton Lake.
It would be a reservoir within a reservoir, adding a net 1.26 million acre-feet of additional storage. Each acre-foot is 326,000 gallons of water.
In the past, I’ve heard comments about this project from people who have been worried about boating and fishing opportunities. Others are concerned with hydroelectric production.
If you’re curious to hear a few details and maybe make a comment, you might want to check out the draft environmental impact statement. But be prepared to spend a little time. This document has four dozen attachments online. It is not light reading.