Public Input Sought On Glen Canyon Dam Operations And Their Impact on Grand Canyon National Park

A series of public meetings has been scheduled to gain public input on water releases from the Glen Canyon Dam into the Colorado River.

As the National Park Service and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation continue to search for a compromise over water flows from the Glen Canyon Dam and into the Colorado River through Grand Canyon National Park, the public is now being given opportunities to weigh in on the matter.

A series of public meetings that launch November 7 with one in Phoenix, Arizona, is intended to gain public comment on the development of a long-term plan that will determine the timing and volume of water flows from Glen Canyon Dam. Those flows affect hydroelectricity production, beach recreation, native fish and other river-related plants and animals, as well as archeological sites in the national park and the national recreation area.

The long-term plan will address routine operations as well as "experimental" flows that provide additional scientific information about how to protect endangered fish and lessen the effects of dam operations on downstream ecology and other resources. The plan will ensure that regulated flows on the Colorado River meet the goals of supplying hydroelectricity and water for communities, agriculture and industry at the same time they protect the ecologies of the Grand Canyon and Glen Canyon.

The meetings, to be held jointly by the Bureau of Reclamation and the National Park Service, will take place in:

  • Phoenix, Arizona: Monday, November 7, 2011, 6 to 8 p.m., Sheraton Crescent Hotel, 2620 W. Dunlap Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85201.
  • Flagstaff, Arizona: Tuesday, November 8, 2011, 6 to 8 p.m., Radisson Woodlands Hotel Flagstaff, 1175 W. Route 66, Flagstaff, AZ 86001.
  • Page, Arizona: Wednesday, November 9, 2011, 6 to 8 p.m., Courtyard Page at Lake Powell, 600 Clubhouse Drive, Page, AZ 86040.
  • Salt Lake City, Utah: Tuesday, November 15, 2011, 6 to 8 p.m., Hilton Salt Lake City Center, 255 South West Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84101.
  • Las Vegas, Nevada: Wednesday, November 16, 2011, 6 to 8 p.m., Ramada Las Vegas, 325 East Flamingo Road, Las Vegas, NV 89169.
  • Lakewood, Colorado: Thursday, November 17, 2011, 6 to 8 p.m., Sheraton Denver West Hotel, 360 Union Boulevard, Lakewood, CO 80228.
  • Web-based meeting: Tuesday, November 15, 2011, 1 to 3 p.m. Mountain Time. For specific information about the web-based meeting and how to participate, please refer to the project website at: http://ltempeis.anl.gov.

Work on the new plan, known as the Long-Term Experimental and Management Plan, is the first comprehensive review of Glen Canyon Dam operations in 15 years. The purpose of the LTEMP is to use current and newly developed science to improve and protect resources of Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Grand Canyon National Park, and Lake Mead National Recreation Area, while also complying with the Law of the River, the 1992 Grand Canyon Protection Act, the Endangered Species Act, and other applicable laws.

The LTEMP process will determine the need for future modifications to Glen Canyon Dam operations, and whether to establish an Endangered Species Act Recovery Implementation Program for endangered fish species below Glen Canyon Dam.

Changes to dam operations and other actions taken by the Department of the Interior will be evaluated as "alternatives" in an Environmental Impact Statement. The EIS will document and evaluate impacts of the alternatives.

More information on the meetings will be announced through local media, newsletters, and the project web site: http://ltempeis.anl.gov