Dam Removal

7 petitions

Update posted 4 weeks ago

Petition to Ron DeSantis


11/21/19 UPDATE from Paul Nosca: Congratulations to JENNY CARR -- Granddaughter of MARJORIE HARRIS CARR -- JENNY CARR has been appointed today as the new President of the Florida Defenders of the Environment! 8/10/19 UPDATE from Paul Nosca: Welcome to JENNY CARR -- Granddaughter of MARJORIE HARRIS CARR -- as CO-ADMINISTRATOR of the "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" online petition. In April 2016 the St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD) headquartered in Palatka, Putnam County, Florida released on their website for dissemination to the public an official document entitled: "Technical Publication SJ2016-1: Effects on Lower St. Johns River Nutrient Supply and TMDL Target Compliance from the Restoration of a Free-Flowing Ocklawaha River" authored by John Hendrickson, Environmental Scientist VI, SJRWMD. Congratulations to John Hendrickson who was promoted in 2018 from "Environmental Scientist VI" to "Supervising Environmental Scientist" for the entire St. Johns River Water Management District! The findings of "Technical Publication SJ2016-1" report that the potential downstream detrimental nutrient load to the St. Johns River estuary by a free-flowing Ocklawaha River will be much less than previously predicted (by old 1999 science) and at these lower levels can probably be mitigated in other sections of the St. Johns River basin using measures and procedures known to SJRWMD. We, the undersigned persons being registered voters and/or real property owners of the state of Florida do hereby respectfully petition Governor Ron DeSantis, the SJRWMD and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FL DEP) to earnestly begin, move forward with, and finally carry out the process of restoring to free-and-swift-flowing-again the Ocklawaha River -- "Source to the Sea" -- from its Silver Springs supreme headwaters to its St. Johns River estuary. This restoration process would require the breaching of the earthen Kirkpatrick (Rodman) Dam at the location where the historic Ocklawaha River channel flowed through it prior to September 30, 1968. For this process to begin in earnest the SJRWMD would soon need to approve and issue to the FL DEP the Ocklawaha River restoration Environmental Resource Permit that was originally submitted in 1997; and the FL DEP would soon need to inform and request that SJRWMD no longer hold this Ocklawaha River restoration permit application in abeyance because FL DEP does earnestly intend to move forward with the process that would ultimately involve the breaching of Kirkpatrick (Rodman) Dam to allow the Ocklawaha River to be free-flowing again -- "Source to the Sea" -- from Silver Springs to the St. Johns River. "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" sincerely requests that only registered voters and/or real property owners of the state of Florida respond to and sign-on to this petition. The administrator(s) of this petition shall -- from time to time -- deliver electronically all of the pertinent signature and comment documents to Governor Ron DeSantis, the St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD), and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FL DEP). Saturday 6/24/17 was the 1-Year Anniversary of the creation of this "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" online petition. This SIGN-FOR-FREE $$$ petition had 2,112 supporters and more than 550 favorable comments as of that date. Sunday 6/24/18 was the 2-Year Anniversary of the creation of this "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" online petition. This SIGN-FOR-FREE $$$ petition had 2,404 supporters as of that date. Monday 6/24/19 was the 3-Year Anniversary of the creation of this "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" online petition. This SIGN-FOR-FREE $$$ petition had 2,534 supporters as of that date. ---------------------------------------------------------------- The SJRWMD "Technical Publication SJ2016-1" by John Hendrickson contains the data -- about DISSOLVED SILICA, NITROGEN, and PHOSPHORUS (and their combined effects on possible [downstream] St. Johns River harmful algal blooms) -- best supporting that the restoration of the Ocklawaha River will be beneficial for the entire St. Johns River (Florida's ONLY "American Heritage River") basin. Hendrickson, John. 2016. Effects on Lower St. Johns River Nutrient Supply and TMDL Target Compliance from the Restoration of a Free-Flowing Ocklawaha River. Technical Publication SJ2016-1. 107 pages. St. Johns River Water Management District, Palatka, Florida is available at: ---------------------------------------------------------------- OCKLAWAHA RIVER HISTORY: Former Governor Lawton Chiles on 6/16/95 announced the following, "After a careful review of the Ocklawaha River/Rodman Reservoir issue, I am hereby directing the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, in cooperation with the St Johns River Water Management District, to proceed immediately in applying for permits to restore the Ocklawaha River and in moving forward with a plan to begin an orderly and phased drawdown of the Rodman Reservoir." Quite often "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" has been asked this same general question by sincere people: WHY HASN'T THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER ALREADY BEEN RESTORED SINCE GOVERNOR CHILES AND THE FLORIDA CABINET ORDERED IT TO BE DONE BACK IN THE 1990's? The official answer to that question is as documented in these following three quoted paragraphs from Technical Publication SJ2016-1 by the SJRWMD's John Hendrickson: (1) "In 1991, federal de-authorization of the Cross Florida Barge Canal Project resulted in the transfer of canal lands to the state of Florida. An ad hoc Canal Lands Advisory Committee (CLAC) was formed to provide recommendations to the Governor and Cabinet on the disposition of the barge canal lands and structures. After deliberating on the recommendations of the CLAC, the 1993 Legislature passed Chapter 92-213, Laws of Florida, which directed the Department of Natural Resources (now the Florida Department of Environmental Protection [FDEP]) to ' . . . study the efficacy, both environmental and economic, of complete restoration of the Ocklawaha River, partial restoration of the river, total retention of Rodman Reservoir, and partial retention of the reservoir . . ..' Funds were provided for the St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD) to undertake the study of these four alternatives. As part of the comprehensive assessment performed by SJRWMD, Volume 11 of the Environmental Studies Concerning Four Alternatives for Rodman Reservoir and the Lower Ocklawaha River, Surface Water Quality and Alternatives Analysis for Rodman Reservoir (ECT, 1994) predicted a post-restoration increase in nitrogen (in the form of nitrate+nitrite-N) and phosphorus (as orthophosphate) loads of 878 and 30 metric tons/yr to the LSJR. (2) "Despite the predicted increase in downstream nutrient load, the positive aspects related to the restoration of floodplain functions, increased unique habitat and migratory fish passage appeared to provide overall net environmental gain. At the directive of then-Gov. Lawton Chiles and the Florida Cabinet, FDEP in 1997 submitted a permit application to SJRWMD for the removal of Rodman Reservoir to restore a free-flowing lower Ocklawaha River. (3) "But in 1999, once the permit application package was complete, the case for the restoration was deemed insufficient to meet the environmental resource permit (ERP) and consumptive use permit (CUP) public interest tests, and SJRWMD staff informed FDEP that they could not recommend approval to their Governing Board. The most prominent concern contributing to the recommendation of denial centered on the potential adverse impacts of increased nutrient load to the lower St. Johns River. Adding to this concern was the fact that the lower St. Johns at the time was one of the most prominent water bodies included on the 1999 consent decree between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Earthjustice to establish Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) for impaired Florida waters. FDEP requested that SJRWMD not take agency action and to hold the permit in abeyance indefinitely, a status which has continued until this day." ---------------------------------------------------------------- When you join with "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" (Jenny Carr & Paul Nosca) in our quest to advocate for the restoration of the 56-mile length Ocklawaha River-Silver River system to free-flowing again -- Silver Springs to the St. Johns River estuary  -- by signing the online petition FOR-FREE $$$, it costs you NO $$$!  Most sincerely, "Ocklawahaman" Paul Nosca, the original creator and current co-administrator (with Jenny Carr) of the "FREE THE OCKLAWAHA RIVER BY THE BREACHING OF RODMAN DAM" online petition.

3,167 supporters
Update posted 3 months ago

Petition to John M. Mudre,, Susan Kester

FERC/PG&E: Un-Dam the Eel River, Bring the Salmon Home

It is time to Un-Dam the Eel River  Two dams owned by Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) on the Eel River, the Scott Dam and the Cape Horn, known collectively as the Potter Valley Project, are currently up for relicensing by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC project number P-77-001). This is a process that only happens every 50 years and this is the second relicensing for these dams, which produce only nine megawatts (about 3 windmills worth) of power.  Both public scoping hearings to receive public comments on the dams relicensing have happened out of basin and in non-fishing communities.  The Eel River is the third largest salmon-bearing river in California and once hosted up to 800,000 salmon a year, which supported the commercial fishing industry and Tribal subsistence fishing for the Wiyot, Round Valley, Bear River, Sherwood Valley, and other Tribes. Now fish numbers are about 1% of historical levels and subsistence, commercial and sport fishing opportunities have been strictly curtailed.  The Scott Dam blocks fish passage to between 55-89 miles of habitat for Chinook Salmon and198-288 miles of habitat for steelhead. This dam is very old, has no spillway and presents a safety risk for downstream users. It also creates toxic algae, warms water, and creates many other water quality impacts. The Cape Horn Dam diverts large amounts of water to the Russian River and is is also part of this project.  The dams on the Eel River are not the only issue impacting salmon in this rural watershed, however their removal would be a major step in restoring the Eel River fishery, and making sure Eel River salmon and trout survive the impacts of climate change. PG&E also uses dangerous chemicals to maintain vegetation around the dams on the Eel River.   

Save California Salmon !
7,827 supporters
Update posted 9 months ago

Petition to Forest preserve district of Will County, Village of Shorewood Illinois, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Accelerate removal of the Hammel Woods Dam in Shorewood, IL

We, residents in the Village of Shorewood Illinois and surrounding areas, hereby petition the Forest Preserve District of Will County and the Village of Shorewood Government to accelerate the removal of the Hammel Woods low-head dam. Two more people have tragically drowned at the Hammel Woods Dam on March 31st, 2019. If you agree that the dangers posed by this dam far outweigh any sentimental or aesthetic value, please read and consider signing this petition. What is a "low-head" or "run of the river" dam and why are they dangerous? Low-head dams are small often concrete structures usually no more than 10 feet high.  Water constantly flows over them since they have no gates or water control devices.  They were typically built to provide water for grain mills or early hydroelectric generators, or to create impounds for recreational purposes.  Because of their small size, their dangers are often underestimated. Low-head dams have little practical use today.  Coined as "drowning machines", they are the most dangerous type of dam and are responsible for over 500 deaths across the US since the 1980s, and over two dozen in the Chicagoland area alone.  Recirculating currents in the boil, large hydraulic forces, and reduced buoyancy due to bubbles created by the overflow make them nearly impossible to escape.  Often, they are not even seen by boaters on the river until it's too late.   The Hammel Woods low-head dam The Hammel Woods Dam itself is approximately 80-90 years old and is constructed of quarried limestone with a concrete foundation.  It stands at 4 feet high, 110 feet across, and creates a relatively small impound (pool) behind the dam of approximately 5.2 acres.  Hammel Woods is a very popular recreation area, and a large number of people frequent the area near the dam, increasing the likelihood of another accident.  The Hammel Woods Dam was originally built to create a pool for recreational use on the Dupage River, one of the very features that make it so dangerous today. Past Studies and Assessments of the dam At least two studies have been done related to the DuPage river low-head dams, the first being completed over 15 years ago.  Both recommend complete removal of the Hammel Woods Dam specifically. (Click each red link to view full report) October 2003 Study - "Results of the 2003 analysis subsequently concluded that the preferred alternative with respect to Hammel Woods Dam was a Complete Dam Removal." "... dams within the study area do not provide any useful function other than they maintain a flat water pool and create the sound of rushing water..." "...this dam is considered to have the most threat to public safety due to its dangerous hydraulics." "...all of the dams (the ones at Channahon and Hammel Woods in particular) create an elevated safety hazard to the people using the river, be it for fishing, swimming, or boating." December 2017 Assessment - "a District decision to move forward with...a complete above grade removal including a riffle and boulder features to enhance aquatic habitat and subsequent river health." "...investigations of the site revealed that the low head dam across the river at this location impedes aquatic species movement upstream, forces paddlers to portage around the structure under most flow conditions, and presents a life-threatening hazard to paddlers who go over the dam or for persons wading the river immediately below the dam" Advantages/Disadvantages of Dec 2017 Assessment recommendation Advantages-Improves Ecological Factors Such as Water Quality, and Aquatic Habitat.-Returns the Reach of River to its Natural Conditions.-Re-establishes the river’s recreational connectivity for paddlers-Reduces/Eliminates the District’s Long-Term Maintenance Responsibilities-Removes the District’s Liability Associated with its Public Safety Hazard and Owning the Dam (i.e. no IL Dam Safety requirements)-Opportunity to provide the sound of falling water associated with a dam Disadvantages-Relatively Higher Cost as Compared to a Partial Removal-Land and Recreational Uses Would be Different than Existing-Dam May Have Sentimental Value to Public Recent incidents at the Hammel Woods Dam (not a complete list) Three kayakers are lucky to be alive (click the link for video) May 1993 - 41-year-old Joliet man drowned at the damJuly 2011 - 4 Kayakers rescued at the damJune 2013 - 24-year-old Itasca man drowned at the damMay 2018 - Empty kayaks at dam prompt emergency responseMarch 2019 - a 28-year-old man and 22-year-old woman drowned at the dam What now? Chicago Tribune Article on the latest incident (click link for article) "Coincidentally, Will County forest preserve commissioners this week were expected to review two resolutions regarding the eventual removal of the dam. The district has been working since 2017 with the Lower DuPage Water Coalition to find ways to improve water quality and safety on the river, Cain said. After a study of options, removal of the Hammel Woods dam was identified as the highest priority. The district’s operations committee Wednesday is expected to vote on a resolution for phase 2 engineering for dam removal. The study is expected to cost $104,000. Committee members also are expected to vote on a resolution of agreement with the DuPage Water Coalition for the coalition to fund the study. The study is expected to be completed later this year. Initial estimates show dam removal could cost $585,000, which also is expected to be covered by the coalition. Dam removal could begin as early as next year, Cain said. Both resolutions, if approved by the committee, would be presented for a vote of the full forest preserve district board at its April 11 meeting, Cain said." ----------------------------------- The decision to remove the dam "eventually" is the right one, but this process could take years.  Together we can send a strong message that one more life lost is one too many.  Regardless of how or why people end up trapped in the dam, removal of this drowning machine as soon as possible will immediately mitigate these dangerous conditions forever. Thank you for signing this petition.

James Kennedy
1,360 supporters
Update posted 2 years ago

Petition to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Savannah District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

A River-Friendly and Fiscally Responsible Future for the New Savannah Bluff Lock & Dam

The New Savannah Bluff Lock & Dam (NSBLD) located on the Savannah River is in need of major rehabilitation. Studies are underway to determine a solution for its future, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are seeking input from local city officials, industry and the public in general before moving forward. The Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP) mitigation agreements require the construction of a passage for migratory fish species. The cost of that project is currently estimated at $36M, and existing models involved diverting the river around the failing lock and dam. New federal legislation allows the Corps of Engineers to explore using SHEP funds designated only for the fish passage to also address rehabilitation of the NSBLD, for which there is currently no source of funding.  Savannah Riverkeeper advocates for the construction of a rock dam in place of the current dam, as well as rehabilitation of the existing lock system, which would: Meet criteria for the required fish passage; Maintain the functions of pool and flood control the Lock & Dam has provided for upstream users;  Save millions in local funds by combining two projects; and  Pave the way to opportunities for enhanced river recreation and economic growth in the area.  Sign on to the petition to tell the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other decision-makers that you support this innovative and cost-effective solution for our Savannah River. 

Savannah Riverkeeper
517 supporters