Water temperatures are critical for salmonids. In particular, both young and adults require cool water throughout the summer. Prior to the dams, juvenile salmonids and spring-run adults are thought to have spent much of this time in higher reaches of the tributaries, much of which were blocked by the dams. The lower reaches that once became shallow and warm in the summer, are now expected to sustain juvenile salmonids and spring-run adults throughout the summer. To accommodate this need, dam releases are sustained through the summer to provide adequate flow of cool water. Simultaneously, water diverted from the Trinity River to the Central Valley is also used to help manage temperature in the Sacramento River.
The Temperature Work Group
The Temperature Work Group addresses the challenges of managing water releases for temperature control compliance, and interfaces with the Central Valley Operations on water diversions to the Sacramento River.
Projects coordinated by the Temperature Work Group include: