U.S. Department of the InteriorDOI News Header
Office of the Secretary
March 3, 2008
Contact: Chris Paolino/Joan Moody
(202) 208-6416


Secretary Kempthorne to Open Jet Tubes of Glen Canyon Dam for High-Flow Experiment in Grand Canyon National Park

Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne will open the jet tubes at Glen Canyon Dam on Wednesday, Mar. 5, that will launch an experiment using high flows from Glen Canyon Dam to study how to improve Colorado River resources in Grand Canyon National Park.

The goal of the experiment is to better understand whether higher flows can be used to rebuild eroded beaches downstream of the dam by moving sand accumulated in the riverbed onto sandbars. Colorado River sandbars within the Grand Canyon provide habitat for wildlife, serve as camping beaches for recreationists, and supply sand needed to protect archaeological sites. High flows also create areas of low-velocity flow, or backwaters, used by young native fishes, particularly endangered humpback chub.

The experiment is a cooperative effort of three agencies of the U.S. Department of the Interior—the Bureau of Reclamation, which administers the dam; the U.S. Geological Survey, whose scientists are studying the effects of high flow; and the National Park Service, which manages Grand Canyon National Park—along with state and federal partners. The heads of all three agencies will participate in the launch.

Who: Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne
Robert Johnson, Commissioner, Bureau of Reclamation
Mark Myers, Director, U.S. Geological Survey
Mary Bomar, Director, National Park Service
Steve Martin, Superintendent, Grand Canyon National Park
What: Press conference and opening of Glen Canyon Dam’s four jet tubes to initiate high flows
When: March 5, 2008, at 9:15 a.m.
Where: Carl Hayden Visitor Center, Glen Canyon Dam, Page Arizona
Media: Credentialed media welcome. Please call ahead to one of the following for credentialing information:
Lara Schmit
U.S. Geological Survey
Maureen Oltrogge
National Park Service
Doug Hendrix
Bureau of Reclamation
801-633-5018 (cell)

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