Lake Oroville Community Update: February 21


Newly installed lighting illuminates Oroville Dam’s main spillway at sunrise during a continuous 24-hour period as part of activation testing.

Newly installed lighting illuminates Oroville Dam’s main spillway at sunrise during a continuous 24-hour period as part of activation testing. DWR/2020

PG&E Removes Trees Deemed Hazardous to Powerlines

Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) contractors will be working on DWR property near Lakeland Road to remove trees presenting a hazard to powerlines in the area. Work activities will continue near the Thermalito Diversion Pool through the end of February.

CAL FIRE – Butte County Begins Vegetation Management Project

CAL FIRE work to burn brush piles at the south end of Loafer Creek has been temporarily halted due to dry conditions. This work is part of their Vegetation Management Program which aims to reduce wildfire risk, improve public safety and enhance forest health around Lake Oroville. Approximately eight acres are targeted as part of DWR’s Fuel Load Management Plan (FLMP) to thin overstocked trees and vegetation that increase the intensity of wildfires. FLMP projects occur within the Oroville Facilities Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Project boundary and FLMP projects are developed in coordination with federal, state and local fire and resources management agencies. Once sufficient rainfall has occurred to allow safe burning, the CAL FIRE activities will take place on weekdays throughout the spring.

California Natural Resources Agency Hosts Third Oroville Dam Citizens Advisory Commission Public Meeting

Thank you to everyone who participated in the second Oroville Dam Citizens Advisory Commission meeting, which took place on Friday, February 21 in Oroville. A representative of the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers discussed USACE’s role in flood control, the water control manual for Oroville Dam, and the water control manual update process. A summary and transcript of the meeting will be uploaded to the Oroville Dam Citizens Advisory Commission webpage in the coming weeks. For details about the Commission’s next meeting and for more information about the commission, visit: .

Current Lake Operations

The elevation of Oroville’s reservoir is about 805 feet and storage is 2.25 million acre-feet. Daily average inflows to the lake have ranged between approximately 3,150 cfs (cubic feet per second) to 1,844 cfs over the past week.

Dry conditions are forecasted this weekend and into the week of February 24. Currently, in the Northern Sierra Basin, rainfall is below average, at 53 percent of normal, and snowpack is also below average, measuring 57 percent of normal for this time of year.

Releases to the Feather River were increased from 1,750 cfs to 2,250 cfs on Friday, 2/21, to meet to meet environmental requirements in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.  There is about 800 cfs flowing through the City of Oroville and 1450 cfs being released from the Thermalito Afterbay Outlet.   

All data as of midnight 2/20/20