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Green River/Tusher Diversion Dam Rehabilitation (Utah Deptof Ag & Food)

Emergency Watershed Protection:  Green River/Tusher Diversion Dam Rehabilitation (Utah Department of Agriculture and Food)

Project Description

Green_River_Diversion_RehabThe Green River/Tusher Diversion was constructed in the early 1900s and has been modified over the years to maintain the structure.  During the 2010/2011 flood events, flows in the Green River caused severe damage to the diversion structure, compromising its structural integrity.  In the event of diversion failure, water service to three irrigation canals, the City of Green River, a historic irrigation water delivery system, and one hydropower plant would be eliminated.  Rehabilitating the diversion would directly result in these resources remaining usable for the water rights holders.  The NRCS and UDAF have analyzed alternatives to maintain the existing functions of the diversion for water delivery to irrigation canals and upgrade the diversion structure to current design standards, as well as provide upstream and downstream fish passage and tracking, fish screening, enhanced sediment sluicing, and downstream recreational boat passage. The fish protection and passage components are proposed for inclusion in the project to meet Endangered Species Act requirements for listed fish species populations in the Green River.  The boat passage provision is a navigability requirement of the state of Utah.

Project Proponents

  • The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) - Lead Federal Agency
  • Bureau of Land Management (BLM) – Public Lands Management, Cooperating Agency
  • United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) - Endangered Species Act Technical Oversight
  • State of Utah Forestry, Fire and State Lands (FFSL) – State Sovereign Lands
  • Utah State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) - National Historic Preservation Act Consultation
  • Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) – Local Sponsor

NEPA Analysis

This project is being partially funded by the NRCS Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) program to restore the damage from the 2010/2011 flood events and stabilize the structure. A National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), was prepared by NRCS for the EWP program; however, the repair of this diversion structure does not fit within the analysis parameters of the Programmatic EIS. NRCS, as the lead federal agency, is initiating additional NEPA analysis in the form of an Environmental Assessment to analyze impacts to the natural and human environment from this project. The Environmental Assessment will comply with the Council on Environmental Quality’s regulations at 40 CFR Parts 1500-1508 which require an evaluation of potential environmental impacts associated with federal projects and actions.

The Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) was made available during a public comment period between March 14, 2014 and April 30, 2014.  NRCS received 83 comments on the DEIS during that period.  All comments received have been compiled, addressed and where appropriate, revisions were made to complete the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS).   The FEIS presents the NRCS Preferred Alternative: the Replace In Place With Passages Alternative.




Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) Review Period

The FEIS was issued to the public during a review period from June 20, 2014 to July 21, 2014.  The public comment period is now closed.

Current Status

The NRCS issued the Notice of Availability of the Record of Decision on April 29, 2015.  The notice presents the Record of Decision (ROD) by the Utah office of the NRCS to disburse EWP Program funds for the Green River Diversion Rehabilitation project in Emery and Grand counties, Utah.  The NRCS Utah State Conservationist, David Brown, signed the ROD on April 2, 2015, which constitutes the NRCS’s final decision.

The NRCS, as the lead Federal Agency, is working with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food and the Bureau of Land Management as a cooperating agency to rehabilitate the existing Green River Diversion Dam (diversion) system that will continue to provide water delivery to water rights holders.  The ROD constitutes the NRCS’s final decision to implement the diversion improvements is based upon the analysis in the FEIS, which identified the Replace In Place With Passages as the environmentally preferred alternative.

The Green River/Tusher Diversion Rehabilitation National Environmental Policy Act Process is shown below.



Project Links

Project Documents

Record of Decision --  Green River Diversion Record of Decision (PDF, 2 MB)

Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS Federal Register Notice (PDF, 193 KB)

Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS Public Notice (PDF, 214 KB)

Final EIS

Total  Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS (PDF, 97.6 MB)
Report Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS (PDF, 18.7 MB)
App A Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS (PDF, 16.3 MB)
App B Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS (PDF, 19.9 MB)
App C Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS (PDF, 36.7 MB)
App D Green River Diversion Rehabilitation Final EIS (PDF, 4.7 MB)




Archived Material

Updated:  May 1, 2015