The following report on the Temporary Barriers Project is for your information and action, as appropriate.  This report will be transmitted whenever changes occur to the operation of the barriers, and as a result of modeling and/or field monitoring of water levels in the south Delta.

STATUS AS OF:  October 3, 2008


Head of Old River Barrier (HORB):

The spring HOR barrier was not installed this year due to a court decision by US District Court Judge Wanger that prohibited the installation of the spring barrier to increase protections for delta smelt.  This is an interim decision that effects the 2008 season only.  The fall HORB is not effected.  The fall HORB generally is installed late in September upon the request of the CA Department of Fish and Game and depends upon the current and projected dissolved oxygen levels in the San Joaquin River near Stockton.  On September 29, DFG formally requested the HORB be installed.  The HOR barrier contractor began work midweek and is expected to close the barrier late in the week of October 13.

Agricultural Barriers (Old River near Tracy [ORT], Middle River [MR], Grant Line Canal [GLC]):

The MR and GLC barriers are fully operating with all culvert flap gate opening and closing with the tides.  Monday this week three of the nine culvert flap gates at the ORT barrier were tied open to allow more circulation upstream of the barrier on Old River and improve water quality in that area.  We may untie these flap gates later as the HORB is installed if water levels become an issue.  


Modeling was begun this week but we don’t have the output yet.  Results will be sent as they become available early next week.  This week actual water levels as reported by CDEC have been well above the trigger levels (0.0 feet MSL at both ORT and GLC barriers, 0.3 feet MSL at the MR barrier).


These weekly updates are also available for your information on our website:


If you know of anyone else that should be receiving this update, please let me know by email, and I'll add them to the mailing list.  Thanks!


Mark A. Holderman, P.E.
Chief, Temporary Barriers Project and Lower San Joaquin
Bay-Delta Office

California Department of Water Resources
1416 9th St., P.O. Box 942836
Sacramento, CA 94236-0001

Phone: (916) 653-7429  FAX: (916) 653-6077
Cell/Pager: (916) 601-6036 E-Mail: