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Reclamation to Provide Funding to the Desert Shores Channel Restoration Project

“Salton Sea Management Program Update June 11, 2021

A funding source has been secured for the Desert Shores Channel Restoration Project. With this significant step forward, the Bureau of Reclamation will provide approximately $1 million to initiate the restoration project in the disadvantaged community of Desert Shores. This project will improve air quality in the area, offer dust suppression and support wildlife habitat. “I am excited for the West Shore Communities,” said Imperial County Supervisor Ryan Kelley. “This project was inspired by local residents and community groups and now with the Natural Resources Agency assistance and the support of the Bureau of Reclamation, we will see those dreams fulfilled.” Over the next few months, a scope of work and refined budget will be developed. Next, an agreement will be formalized, which is expected later this fall. Concurrently, Imperial County will lead efforts to complete compliance under the California Environmental Quality Act and obtain permits. In addition, the Salton Sea Management Program (SSMP) – led by the California Natural Resources Agency – will analyze and document the project’s public benefits as part of the federal environmental assessment process underway for the SSMP Phase I: 10-Year Plan. Work on the Desert Shores Project is expected to start in 2022, upon completing the environmental compliance and permitting process. The Desert Shores Channel Restoration Project covers 30 acres and includes the water channels that once connected the Desert Shores Marina and the Salton Sea. The channels are losing water as the water elevation continues to recede. The project aims to meet the goals of habitat restoration and dust suppression by constructing a berm across the former boat channel and refilling the channels with water that will reduce dust and improve salinity, providing habitat for fish and supporting fish-eating birds. In addition, habitat and dust suppression benefits are anticipated through revegetation.” -CNRA June 2021

The EcoMedia Compass, 6/11/21: (To date, 0 dollars have been allocated from the state to the project site or the local groups doing the work.) We’re looking forward to some great progress and promises fulfilled!

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