FRESNO — A U.S. District judge says water can be released from a Northern California reservoir to prevent a salmon kill in the lower Klamath River.
The ruling late Thursday on the Trinity Reservoir from Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill comes after San Joaquin Valley farmers sued the federal government over the releases of water, saying they would be illegal and further decrease the little available to them for irrigation.
O’Neill had ordered the releases temporarily stopped last week while he made a long-term decision.
He said that in the week since, a change in environmental conditions has meant that two-thirds less water than expected was required for the salmon.
Officials expect a large fall run of salmon, but fear low water will lead to mass salmon deaths as happened in 2002.