Klamath Dam Removal Plan breaks ground

SISKIYOU COUNTY, Calif. – The largest dam removal in U.S. History is officially underway.

Crews quietly broke ground earlier this month on March 10th.

Right now, crews are constructing access roads to the dams to be able to bring in heavy equipment for the actual dam removal.

There are some steps that need to be completed before crews can start working, however, like reinforcing bridges for equipment access as well as building some new bridges.

Crews are also working on building new sites and lodging to accommodate the workforce that will be working on the dams.

In a press conference on Tuesday, Mark Bransom, the CEO of the Klamath River Renewal Corporation, reiterated that the restoration aspect of the project is also a huge priority.

“This project of course is much more than just the dam removal,” Bransom explained.” This is also a restoration project that will ultimately return about 38 miles of the Klamath River through the Hydroelectric Project reach to a free flowing, more natural condition.”

Bransom said that part of the preparation process also includes building a new water supply line for the city of Yreka.

Construction for that will begin in May.

Bransom said that the actual removal of the dams won’t begin in the summer as previously planned.

It will instead begin at the start of 2024.

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Ethan McReynolds is a reporter and weekend anchor for NBC5 News. He grew up in Bothell, Washington and graduated from Gonzaga University with a degree in Broadcasting and minors in Journalism and Sport Management. At Gonzaga, he started his own sports podcast. Ethan loves rooting for his hometown Seattle sports teams, especially the Mariners. He loves playing baseball, basketball, and soccer. He is also an avid Taylor Swift fan.
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