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The State

The state will shut down pumps that ship Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta water south and federal pumps will run at half speed the first week of May in a unique agreement to help young Chinook salmon make their way to sea. “This is a precedent setting, cooperative effort to increase the survival of salmon,” said Dick Daniel, assistant chief of the state Department of Fish and Game’s environmental services division. The pumps that export water to the Central Valley and Southern California reverse the flow in the delta, detouring millions of ocean-bound smolt to the powerful turbines and killing as much as 75% of the run, government biologists say. With less pumping, officials say, many more of the young salmon will survive their journey to the sea. “Three years from now, they (the salmon) will come back and spawn again in the Merced, Tuolumne and Stanislaus rivers,” Daniel said.


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