Klamath Dam Removal on Track as KRRC Submits Critical Budget Information to FERC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2020

CONTACT:

Matt Cox, KRRC
(916) 847-6459 (cell)
matt@klamathrenewal.org

KLAMATH REGION – In a February 28 filing to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) submitted updated cost information, including the 

“Guaranteed Maximum Price” (GMP) submitted by Kiewit Infrastructure West (Kiewit) and Resource Environmental Solutions, LLC (RES), and other requested material that further demonstrate KRRC’s capacity to become licensee for the Lower Klamath Project (Project). This filing is another concrete step toward implementing the Amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA), removing the dams and restoring a free-flowing Klamath River.

 “Our project is on track, within budget, and ready to roll,” said Mark Bransom, KRRC Chief Executive Officer. “This submission to FERC proves that we have the funding, the team, the expertise and the plan to do it right and pen a vibrant new chapter of Klamath River history.”

In the February 28 filing, KRRC again demonstrated that its committed funds are sufficient to complete dam removal as proposed in the license surrender application. The updated cost estimate for full dam removal that is based on the contractor-provided GMP is $446 million, which includes more than $50 million of contingency funding, making the project well within KRRC’s $450 million budget. The significant contingency funding is conservative and reflects widely accepted industry standards for complex infrastructure projects.

 This updated total cost estimate reflects project contractor Kiewit Infrastructure West’s GMP of $199 million. The GMP is based on 60% design completion and integrates bids from more than 100 potential sub-contractors, including many local and tribal businesses. The $78 million GMP from RES includes restoration implementation and serving as the Liability Transfer Corporation. The GMP is the most accurate, complete and timely information available regarding construction and restoration costs, and providing long-term risk management.

The recent submission also includes revised contracting arrangements that add clarity and cost savings to the project; updated risk registers; insight into KRRC’s plans for a Local Impact Mitigation Fund to address potential damages to private properties; wildfire risk analysis assessment; and an updated insurance approach. 

The insurance is part of a risk management program believed to be the most comprehensive ever considered by FERC for purposes of dam removal. In addition to insurance, the risk package includes performance bond and indemnity coverages to offset potential short- and long-term project effects.

In 2016, KRRC submitted license transfer and surrender applications to FERC, both of which are necessary for KRRC to take ownership of the four lower Klamath dams, remove them, and restore the river. In 2018, KRRC submitted to FERC its “Definite Plan,” a comprehensive, 2,300-page document that covered every aspect of its proposal, including plans for facilities removal, site remediation and restoration, estimated cost, and risk mitigation.

As part of the review process for KRRC’s Definite Plan, FERC directed KRRC to convene an independent Board of Consultants (BOC) to analyze KRRC’s work and provide feedback and suggestions. The BOC comprises experts in dam construction and removal, engineering, aquatic and terrestrial biology, construction cost estimating, insurance, and bonding for large infrastructure projects. The BOC has provided ongoing review and guidance on the dam removal project. They will culminate their comprehensive review of KRRC’s February 28 submittal in a report that will go to FERC in mid-March

“The KHSA represents years of negotiations, exhaustive scientific study, and compromise among the many groups who are all working together to improve conditions along the Klamath River,” said Bransom. “Healthy rivers breathe life into the communities they touch. Dam removal and a revitalized Klamath River will enhance resiliency to strengthen the entire Klamath watershed for the future.”

FERC will decide on the KRRC license transfer and surrender applications. KRRC anticipates beginning drawdown and removal as early as 2022, pending action by FERC and other regulators.

To view the KRRC filing, visit: www.klamathrenewal.org/definite-plan.

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The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2016 as part of the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). KRRC is part of a cooperative effort to re-establish the natural vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin. Signatories of the amended KHSA incude the states of California and Oregon, local governments, tribal nations, dam owner PacifiCorp, irrigators, and several conservation and fishing groups. KRRC was formed for the sole purpose of taking ownership of four PacifiCorps dams—J.C. Boyle, Copco No. 1 & 2, and Iron Gate—and then removing these dams, restoring formerly inundated lands, and implementing required mitigation measures in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. KRRC’s work is funded by PacifiCorp customer surcharges and California Proposition 1 water bond funds.

KRRC values transparency and cooperation with all stakeholders and is committed to working with residents and governments to minimize any nuisance or negative impacts while enhancing the project’s local benefits.

KRRC Awards McMillen Jacobs Associates Owner’s Representative Contract on Klamath Dam Removal Project

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 25, 2020

CONTACT:

Matt Cox, KRRC
(916) 847-6459 (cell)
matt@klamathrenewal.org

Sandy Duran, McMillen Jacobs
(208) 342-4214 (office)
duran@mcmjac.com

KLAMATH BASIN – The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) continues progress toward implementing the Amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA), removing the Klamath dams and restoring a free-flowing Klamath River, by selecting McMillen Jacobs Associates (McMillen Jacobs) to provide owner’s representation services.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with McMillen Jacobs to help ensure that all the various phases of this landmark project are running smoothly and in concert with one another,” said Mark Bransom, KRRC Chief Executive Officer. “They are one of the few firms who have either designed or constructed most of the elements involved in the removal of the lower Klamath dams, so they are uniquely positioned to offer the experience and expertise needed to deliver success.”

McMillen Jacobs is a full-service engineering, construction management, environmental, and self-performing construction firm in the water resources, hydropower, fisheries, water conveyance, irrigation, transportation, heavy civil, and underground markets. They have completed more than 150 projects over the past 10 years at hydropower and fisheries facilities, and are fully qualified to advise on dam decommissioning, reservoir modifications, construction of fish hatcheries, water line replacements, fish passage and habitat restoration.

Mort McMillen will serve as the Program Manager for McMillen Jacobs, providing guidance for overall project implementation and risk management, along with his support team of environmental, engineering, and construction staff.

“I have been fortunate to work on a wide range of water resources, hydropower and dam, and fisheries projects over my 35-year career,” said McMillen. “The Klamath dam removal provides an opportunity to bring all of these elements together into one exciting and challenging project that offers tremendous value to fish, wildlife resources and communities.”

# # #

The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2016 as part of the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). KRRC is part of a cooperative effort to re-establish the natural vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin. Signatories of the amended KHSA incude the states of California and Oregon, local governments, tribal nations, dam owner PacifiCorp, irrigators, and several conservation and fishing groups. KRRC was formed for the sole purpose of taking ownership of four PacifiCorps dams—J.C. Boyle, Copco No. 1 & 2, and Iron Gate—and then removing these dams, restoring formerly inundated lands, and implementing required mitigation measures in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. KRRC’s work is funded by PacifiCorp customer surcharges and California Proposition 1 water bond funds.

KRRC values transparency and cooperation with all stakeholders and is committed to working with residents and governments to minimize any nuisance or negative impacts while enhancing the project’s local benefits.

KRRC to Build New Water Infrastructure for City of Yreka

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 9, 2020

CONTACT: Matt Cox, KRRC
(916) 847-6459 (cell)
matt@klamathrenewal.org

KLAMATH BASIN – The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC), in coordination with the City of Yreka, has selected the final design for a new, state-of-the-art water line for the City. The entire anticipated cost of the $4 million project will be paid for by KRRC.

Matt Cox, KRRC Director of Communications, noted that this robust and upgraded water line will replace the aging line that would be impacted by the removal of Iron Gate Dam.

“The water line replacement project will be constructed prior to dam removal, and there will be no interruption to the Yreka water supply,” said Cox. “KRRC has  committed from the very beginning of our project to leave local infrastructure, such as roads and bridges, in as good or better shape than we found them. This new water line is an example of our commitment to fulfilling that promise. The current water line would have eventually needed  replacement even without the KRRC project, so City residents are receiving a very substantial benefit.”

The design includes a waterline relocation attached to a pipe bridge over the Klamath River. The design will accommodate stringent seismic and flood criteria. Appropriately designed ballistic and other protections will be a key part of the design, and the pipe bridge solution will allow for future ease of maintenance compared to the existing pipe, which runs along the bottom of the reservoir.

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The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2016 as part of the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). KRRC is part of a cooperative effort to re-establish the natural vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin. Signatories of the amended KHSA incude the states of California and Oregon, local governments, tribal nations, dam owner PacifiCorp, irrigators, and several conservation and fishing groups. KRRC was formed for the sole purpose of taking ownership of four PacifiCorp dams — J.C. Boyle, Copco No. 1 & 2, and Iron Gate – and then removing these dams, restoring formerly inundated lands, and implementing required mitigation measures in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. KRRC’s work is funded by PacifiCorp customer surcharges and California Proposition 1 water bond funds.

KRRC values transparency and cooperation with all stakeholders and is committed to working with residents and governments to minimize any nuisance or negative impacts while enhancing the project’s local benefits.

Klamath Dam Removal Moves Forward as KRRC Makes Critical Submission to FERC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 29, 2019

CONTACT: Matt Cox, KRRC
(916) 847-6459 (cell)
matt@klamathrenewal.org

KLAMATH BASIN – Today, in a filing to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) answered important,  substantive questions FERC asked to evaluate KRRC’s capacity to become licensee for the Lower Klamath Project (Project) and remove the four dams on the Klamath River. This submission to FERC is another concrete step toward fulfilling the terms of the Amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA), removing the dams and restoring a free-flowing Klamath River.

“This is a project of vast importance for the environment, the river, and the people and communities in the Klamath Basin,” said Mark Bransom, KRRC Chief Executive Officer. “Our submission to FERC today proves that we understand the magnitude of our charge and are on the right path. We have the funding, the team, the expertise and the plan to do it right and pen a vibrant new chapter of Klamath River history. We want to particularly underscore the years of effort by tribal communities who truly laid the foundation for where we are today.”

In 2016, KRRC submitted license transfer and surrender applications to FERC, both of which are necessary for KRRC to take ownership of the four lower Klamath dams, remove them, and restore the river. In 2018, KRRC submitted to FERC its “Definite Plan,” a comprehensive, 2,800-page document that covered every aspect of its proposal, including plans for facilities removal, site remediation and restoration, estimated cost, and risk mitigation.

As part of the review process for KRRC’s Definite Plan, FERC directed KRRC to convene an independent Board of Consultants (BOC) to analyze KRRC’s work and provide feedback and suggestions. The BOC comprises experts in dam construction and removal, engineering, aquatic and terrestrial biology, construction cost estimating, insurance, and bonding for large infrastructure projects. BOCs are common for large projects in FERC’s purview.

In late December 2018, the BOC released its suggestions and questions regarding the Definite Plan to KRRC, and KRRC has spent the past seven months refining and strengthening aspects of the Definite Plan to reflect the BOC input, leading to today’s supplemental submission. The result is a compelling, comprehensive approach and proof of KRRC’s capacity for FERC to consider as it deliberates on license transfer and surrender.

Specifically, in the new filing, KRRC demonstrated that its committed funds are sufficient to complete dam removal as proposed in the license surrender application. This updated cost estimate reflects refinements to prior cost-estimate work completed by the federal Bureau of Reclamation, simulation of tens-of-thousands of scenarios that could affect costs, and incorporation of expert BOC input. The new, “P80” cost estimate for full dam removal is $434 million, well within KRRC’s $450 million budget. P80 is an industry standard for cost estimating that assumes 80-percent of a project’s identified risks will occur over the life of the project. The $434 million figure also includes significant contingency funding to provide a substantial buffer for any additional project costs.

In addition, KRRC has developed the most comprehensive risk management program ever considered by FERC for purposes of dam removal. The risk package includes insurance, performance bond, and indemnity coverages to offset potential short- and long-term project effects.

KRRC has also engaged a world-class, best-in-business team to ensure its capacity as licensee, including technical consultant AECOM, with a global track record of cost estimation of complex construction projects; Kiewit Infrastructure West, which possesses a history of successfully completing large and challenging water resources projects; risk management expert AON, which creates risk solutions across all industry sectors; and Resource Environmental Solutions, the nation’s leader in long-term environmental mitigation and management of associated liabilities. 

“The KHSA represents years of negotiations, exhaustive scientific study, and compromise among the many groups who are all working together for a robust Klamath River and Basin,” said Bransom. “Healthy rivers breathe life into the communities they touch. Dam removal and a revitalized Klamath River will enhance resiliency to strengthen the entire Basin for the future.”

FERC will decide on the KRRC license transfer and surrender applications. KRRC anticipates beginning drawdown and removal as early as 2022, pending action by FERC and other regulators.

To view the KRRC filing, visit: www.klamathrenewal.org/definite-plan.

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The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2016 as part of the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). KRRC is part of a cooperative effort to re-establish the natural vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin. Signatories of the amended KHSA incude the states of California and Oregon, local governments, tribal nations, dam owner PacifiCorp, irrigators, and several conservation and fishing groups. KRRC was formed for the sole purpose of taking ownership of four PacifiCorps dams — J.C. Boyle, Copco No. 1 & 2, and Iron Gate – and then removing these dams, restoring formerly inundated lands, and implementing required mitigation measures in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. KRRC’s work is funded by PacifiCorp customer surcharges and California Proposition 1 water bond funds.

KRRC values transparency and cooperation with all stakeholders and is committed to working with residents and governments to minimize any nuisance or negative impacts while enhancing the project’s local benefits.

KRRC and Kiewit Name RES as Lead Restoration Contractor on Klamath Dam Removal Project

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 24, 2019

CONTACT: Matt Cox, KRRC
(916) 847-6459 (cell)
matt@klamathrenewal.org

Michael Hare, RES
(225) 772-2643
mhare@res.us

KLAMATH BASIN – Today, the Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC), along with lead contractor Kiewit, continue progress toward fulfilling the terms of the Amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA) dam removal and restoring a free-flowing Klamath River by selecting Resource Environmental Solutions, LLC (RES) as project restoration subcontractor. Under the current award, RES has been added to the team to take a leadership role in the restoration design and planning, with the goal of RES leading the restoration following the completion of design.

“We could not ask for a better partner than RES to undertake the vital environmental restoration that is a key part of this landmark project. They have the proven experience and expertise needed to ensure success,” said Mark Bransom, KRRC Chief Executive Officer.

RES is a nationally recognized leader in environmental restoration and water quality improvement projects. Recently, RES has undertaken a significant permittee-responsible mitigation project restoring approximately 17,000 acres into a functioning native ecosystem for the North Texas Municipal Water District. RES enables turnkey environmental solutions ranging from initial site planning, design, construction (restoration), and long-term stewardship. After a decade of operation, the team has worked across nearly 20 states, improving more than 300 miles of streams, restoring more than 50,000 acres, and planting more than 15,000,000 trees.

“By returning our nation’s rivers to their natural condition, these projects enable large-scale restoration to occur, which provide significant benefits to the local community while enhancing the surrounding ecosystems,” said Elliott Bouillion, RES, President and CEO. “We are excited to work with KRRC, Kiewit, and agencies to evaluate the environmental restoration elements to ensure a timely and durable solution is in place for the community.”

RES is known for integrating long-term stewardship into its restoration designs and has extensive experience addressing potential liabilities associated with challenging, large-scale projects. Given the complexity of a project this size, RES will ensure the restoration plan provides the necessary adaptive management to ensure the permit requirements are achieved as the river returns to its natural state.

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The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2016 as part of the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). KRRC is part of a cooperative effort to re-establish the natural vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin. Signatories of the amended KHSA incude the states of California and Oregon, local governments, tribal nations, dam owner PacifiCorp, irrigators, and several conservation and fishing groups. KRRC was formed for the sole purpose of taking ownership of four PacifiCorps dams — J.C. Boyle, Copco No. 1 & 2, and Iron Gate – and then removing these dams, restoring formerly inundated lands, and implementing required mitigation measures in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. KRRC’s work is funded by PacifiCorp customer surcharges and California Proposition 1 water bond funds.

KRRC values transparency and cooperation with all stakeholders and is committed to working with residents and governments to minimize any nuisance or negative impacts while enhancing the project’s local benefits.

Klamath River Renewal Corporation Awards Kiewit Milestone Construction Contract for Dam Removal

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 25, 2019

CONTACT: Matt Cox
(916) 847-6459 (cell)
matt@klamathrenewal.org

KLAMATH BASIN – Yesterday, the Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) took a major step toward dam removal and creating a free-flowing Klamath River by entering into a dam removal design-build contract with construction firm Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. of Fairfield, California. The initial award authorizes $18.1 million in preliminary services, with a further award for project implementation work to follow once design is finalized.

“Selecting Kiewit marks another key achievement and brings KRRC closer to completing the largest dam removal and river restoration project in U.S. history. This contract will help demonstrate KRRC’s capacity to undertake the project consistent with a license transfer application pending before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission,” said Mark Bransom, KRRC Chief Executive Officer. “Once implemented, the project will help restore the vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin.”

Kiewit has extensive experience in major construction projects, most recently the emergency reconstruction of the Oroville Dam spillways, which involved removal and repair of both the main flood control and emergency spillways in less than 18 months as well extensive debris and sediment removal, development of access roads and other work. Kiewit has also undertaken relevant projects such as the Folsom Dam Spillway Construction (Phases II & IV), East Toba and Montrose Hydroelectric Design Build and the Kwalsa and Upper Stave Hydroelectric Design Build.

Kiewit has assigned Knight Piesold as the lead designer of the KRRC project. The selection of the restoration contractor will be forthcoming.

“We are very proud to have been selected by KRRC. This project has many similarities to other complex water and hydroelectric projects we’ve delivered across North America,” said Jamie Wisenbaker, senior vice president, Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. “We fully understand the breadth and importance of this undertaking and are excited and committed to safely delivering a high-quality project that meets the expectations of KRRC, the community and all key stakeholders in the region. We look forward to partnering with KRRC and getting started.”

Under this agreement, Kiewit will utilize the Progressive Design-Build (PDB) delivery method, assuming responsibility for both the design and execution of dam removal and river restoration, to be completed across two phases.

The preliminary services phase will include design, planning, permitting support, native seed bank development, and other preparation for the later drawdown of the reservoirs. This work will begin immediately. 

The project implementation phase will be awarded to Kiewit at the end of the preliminary services phase, beginning with pre-drawdown work including dam modifications for drawdown of the reservoirs, road and bridge access improvements to accommodate construction vehicle traffic, and bridge and culvert improvements to accommodate new river and creek geometry.

Following the reservoir drawdown, project implementation will focus on dam and hydropower facilities removal, recreation facilities removal, creation of new recreation facilities, and restoration of formerly inundated land and other disturbed areas.

The project implementation phase is contingent on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s approval of license transfer and license surrender, as well as other regulatory permits.

Early in the preliminary services process, Kiewit will study the project site and develop a detailed project design, including obtaining competitive bids for various elements of the work. With this information, KRRC and Kiewit will agree on a final “Guaranteed Maximum Price” (GMP) for all project implementation work. The GMP ensures that the contractor will be responsible for absorbing cost overruns, protecting the ratepayers and taxpayers who are funding this project.

On the current schedule, it is expected that Kiewit will complete due diligence and submit a GMP based on 60-percent design by January 2020.

The PDB contract requires that local and tribal businesses and individuals have the opportunity to participate, and to increase the number of ways that this project will benefit the surrounding communities and local economy.

“For many years, local tribes have been saying ‘bring the salmon home.’ They have advocated passionately for this project,” said Lester Snow, KRRC Board President. “KRRC wishes to acknowledge the enormous and effective work of countless tribal members who truly laid the foundation for this project.”

“Kiewit has every technical skill in the world to get the job done, but beyond that, they just feel like the right fit,” said Bransom. “Kiewit also comes to the project with relevant experience, including with the states of California and Oregon, as well as PacifiCorp (a Berkshire Hathaway Energy company), through successfully completed construction projects as well as other business relationships.”

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The Klamath River Renewal Corporation (KRRC) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2016 as part of the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). KRRC is part of a cooperative effort to re-establish the natural vitality of the Klamath River so that it can support all communities in the basin. Signatories of the amended KHSA incude the states of California and Oregon, local governments, tribal nations, dam owner PacifiCorp, irrigators, and several conservation and fishing groups. KRRC was formed for the sole purpose of taking ownership of four PacifiCorps dams — J.C. Boyle, Copco No. 1 & 2, and Iron Gate – and then removing these dams, restoring formerly inundated lands, and implementing required mitigation measures in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations. KRRC’s work is funded by PacifiCorp customer surcharges and California Proposition 1 water bond funds.

KRRC values transparency and cooperation with all stakeholders and is committed to working with residents and governments to minimize any nuisance or negative impacts while enhancing the project’s local benefits.