Klamath Irrigation Districts prepare to move water over concerns

KLAMATH COUNTY, Ore. — Klamath Project irrigation districts are preparing to move water as concerns grow about potential flood releases on Upper Klamath Lake in the coming weeks.

The Klamath Water Users Association says its members have been concerned over water management in Upper Klamath Lake. The Klamath irrigation district says given the possibility of flood conditions in the coming weeks, it could pose a risk for everyone along the Klamath River, including those working on dam removals.

Irrigation District Executive Director Gene Souza says their request to discuss these concerns with the Bureau of Reclamation has gone unanswered.

Our desire or request to have that discussion was unanswered. As of right now, the current projections that we’re seeing is that we have a greater than 50% chance that Upper Klamath Lake will receive or meet flood stage.

The Bureau of Reclamation predicts summer conditions will have below-average inflows into Upper Klamath Lake, limiting the amount of water farmers and wildlife refuges can receive during that time.

Officials say decisions will be made in the coming days to decide water allocations for all areas of the basin this year.

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