Flood Risk Reduction Partners and Projects
Yuba Water Agency invests millions of dollars through grants and loans to local levee districts and related agencies, as well as staff time and infrastructure improvements to agency facilities, to advance its mission of reducing catastrophic flood risk for the people of Yuba County. The agency also works closely with dozens of local, state, federal and research institutions to coordinate and align programmatic goals and major infrastructure projects that directly impact the people of Yuba County in real, tangible ways.
Major work completed and underway
Recognizing the urgency for advancing flood risk reduction projects after the 1986 and 1997 floods, Yuba Water pursued multi-benefit infrastructure projects that included environmental and water supply benefits, which in turn helped secure funding from state bond programs and regional developers. This unique and proactive approach covered significant portions of early project costs and has been instrumental in securing millions of dollars in state and federal funds and credits for projects like the Feather River Setback Levee, Bear River Setback Levee, the Marysville Ring Levee and additional infrastructure improvements.
In one of its most significant flood risk reduction efforts since building New Bullards Bar Dam and Reservoir, Yuba Water is designing an Atmospheric River Control Spillway (ARC Spillway) at the dam. The new ARC Spillway will significantly reduce flood risk to communities and agriculture along the Yuba and Feather rivers, improve levee resilience, enhance dam safety and bring new jobs and economic benefits to the region.
Atmospheric river research, reservoir operations and regional coordination
Yuba Water also continually seeks to implement other, non-structural measures to improve public safety, such as agency and technology development. Some of the major research and operational coordination efforts underway include:
- In partnership with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography’s Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes, Yuba Water is advancing atmospheric river research and the development of new tools specific to the Yuba and Feather River watersheds. Through improved forecasting and integration with operations, this work will reduce adverse flood and water supply impacts expected with changing hydrology due to climate change.
- Adding a second spillway to New Bullards Bar Dam will significantly reduce flood risk to communities and agriculture along the Yuba and Feather rivers, improve levee resilience, enhance climate resilience and dam safety, and bring new jobs and economic benefits to the region. The ARC Spillway is currently in the design phase.
- Through improved data gathering, real-time information exchange and application of recent advancements in forecasting, Forecast-Coordinated Operations helps minimize the risk of exceeding river channel capacity during high-flow events.
- Implementing forecast-informed reservoir operations reduces flood risk and improves public safety by using weather forecasts to determine the optimal releases for a dam in advance of threatening storms.
- Yuba Water, Three Rivers Levee Improvement Authority, Marysville Levee Commission and Sutter Butte Flood Control Agency partnered to develop the Feather River Flood Management Plan. The plan outlines the long-term vision and goals for flood risk reduction in the region.
Flood Risk Reduction Partners