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200733000 - Gardena Farms Irrigation District Irrigation Efficiency and Instream Flow Project

Sponsor: Gardena Farms Irrigation Distirct

Budgets: FY07: $362,084 | FY08: $362,083 | FY09: $362,333

Short description: The purpose of this proposal is to place open channel irrigation deliveries in closed pipe and return the savings to the Walla Walla River as instream flow. Conserved water would be returned to the Walla Walla River at the Gardena Farms diversion.

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Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)

Funding category: Capital

Recommended budgets: FY07: $0 | FY08: $1,086,500 | FY09: $0

Comment: Combine the Walla Walla Juvenile and Adult passage Improvement project (199601100) with Gardena Irrigation Project and Walla Walla Flow. Capital component. No expense funds should be needed.

Funding category: Expense

Recommended budgets: FY07: $0 | FY08: $0 | FY09: $0

Comment: Combine the Walla Walla Juvenile and Adult passage Improvement project (199601100) with Gardena Irrigation Project and Walla Walla Flow. No expense funds needed for this project. See capital budget for the capital component.

ISRP final recommendation: Fundable

Comment:

The sponsors provided clear responses to ISRP questions. They made heavy use of habitat models (EDT, PHABSIM) to forecast benefits from increased flow. This strategy permits development of a hypothesis regarding the benefits of the proposed action. The test of this hypothesis, and thus the science behind this project, awaits the availability of data to assess these predictions. This project could provide an opportunity to test the model results from EDT and PHABSIM. There is, at present, a leap of faith associated with the project. Additional flow in the affected reach may or may not be crucial for the target species. It would be, for example, if it were shown that production in this reach limits recruitment to the adult stages. It may be, however, that low survival in this reach is compensated by relatively high survival at some other location or life-history stage. If compensated, low survival in this reach would have no impact on recruitment to the adult stages. Ultimately, future expenditures in the basin and elsewhere for this kind of project will benefit from good M&E and reporting of results. This proposal should be linked to the Columbia Basin Water Transaction Program (proposal #200201301) and address the criteria for water transactions under that program that are relevant to the proposed actions.

State/province recommendation: Not fundable due to budget constraints

Review group: OSPIT - Plateau

Recommended budgets: FY07: (n/a) | FY08: (n/a) | FY09: (n/a)

Comment: OSPIT recognizes the importance of this project to the basin, but believes that other sources of funding would be available to complete the piping work and would recommend that the sponsors request the Columbia Basin Water Transactions Program to purchase the resulting saved water.

State/province recommendation: Washington

Review group: Washington list

Recommended budgets: FY07: (n/a) | FY08: (n/a) | FY09: (n/a)

Comment: See Washington guidance