The Bear Yuba Land Trust, formerly Nevada County Land Trust is preparing to fight a proposal to build a huge dam and reservoir on the Bear River. Land Trust Executive Director, Marty Coleman Hunt says the South Sutter Water district has posted their feasibility study on the project on their website which shows a reservoir between up to 400 thousand acre feet in size.
“At the mid-range it would be about five times larger than Rollins Reservoir, so it would be one of the largest reservoirs in the foothills, so it’s a pretty substantial project for them.”
South Sutter Water Districts plan is to sell the water to 3 water districts in southern California and to Napa. Coleman-Hund says the Land trust is not opposed to communities getting access to water but she says this is the wrong place for a dam.
“Most of the proposed pool area of the reservoir would be inundating land that we either own or that private land owners own and have a conservation easement on. So those conservation projects would be condemned by imminent domain, they would take over the land and obviously we’re going to fight this.”
Nevada Irrigation District is also concerned about its future water rights and is on a legal quest to determine who actually owns the water rights on the Bear River below Combie Dam.
The South Sutter Water District officials have agreed to present the NID board with a review of their proposed plan at the Board meeting October 12th.