Update on Centennial Dam

Published 10/19/2021  |  South Yuba River Citizens League

Nevada Irrigation District (NID) is re-engaging in an effort to plan for their future water needs. The resulting plan will be known as the Plan for Water and the public process kicks off on November 9th at 4PM. The final version of the plan will reassess hydrology, water supply, and demand over the next 50 years.

Ultimately, the plan will help NID determine if our region needs additional water storage. Thus, this planning process will be an important inflection point in the campaign against Centennial Dam.

The proposed planning process involves stakeholders through a series of public workshops, the exact nature of which are yet to be identified. In July 2020, the NID Board approved a robust public process that would have included outreach and education efforts, a technical expert panel, and facilitators for controversial topics. NID is considering reducing this plan due to budgetary and timeline constraints.

SYRCL believes that community involvement is the foundation of a robust and resilient plan that accurately addresses our region’s water future. We are actively advocating for a process that incorporates our community’s needs and are hopeful NID will agree.  

Getting Involved

November 9, 2021 – 4 PM: Plan for Water Stage 1 Meeting

The first stage of the Plan for Water is titled System Overview. In a recent Board meeting, NID’s General Manager Jennifer Hanson stated that this stage is intended to help the Board and public start this planning process on common ground, with a common understanding of the entire water system. Ms. Hanson stated that NID staff will conduct a thorough review of the system at the watershed level.

This review will move from top to bottom through the watershed, considering reservoirs and storage, distribution channels and pipes, and the canal system. The intent is to understand how NID’s water system is interconnected with hydropower and end-user delivery. This first stage of the Plan for Water process is expected to be one to two meetings in length. We encourage you to attend this first meeting to show NID that our community is engaged, concerned, and seeking environmentally- and community-conscious outcomes. 

Make Your Voice Heard

Your voice is crucial in this process. We encourage all interested parties to share their thoughts at public meetings, become a Dam Watchdog, and subscribe to NID updates. Below are some of our recommendations on how to stay informed, up to date, and ensure that your voice is heard:

1. Attend the first Plan for Water meeting on November 9th to show NID that the community is invested in the Plan’s outcome.

According to NID’s website, the first Plan For Water meeting is slated to be in-person. To check for changes to meeting format, please visit the Plan for Water Upcoming Meetings page.

Where: NID’s main office at 1036 W Main Street, Grass Valley, CA 95945

When: Tuesday, November 9, 2021, at 4 PM

2. Become a Dam Watchdog or subscribe to Centennial Dam eNews. We strive to keep our community informed of NID operations that can affect our community’s water future. Together, 1,700 watchdogs are scrutinizing every angle of the Centennial Dam project and its potential impacts on the Yuba and Bear rivers.

3. Sign up for NID’s emails and newsletters. NID has a specific Plan for Water email list that will provide updates on the process. Additionally, Jennifer Hanson, NID’s General Manager, has started issuing a newsletter that covers a wide range of relevant information. Be sure to sign up for both!

To learn more about NID’s Plan for Water, please visit Plan for Water – Nevada Irrigation District (nidwater.com)

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