BACKGROUNDThe 2008 Smelt BiOp, prepared pursuant to Section 7of the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), 16 U.S.C. §1536(a)(2), concluded that “the coordinated operations ofthe CVP and SWP, as proposed, are likely to jeopardizethe continued existence of the delta smelt” and“adversely modify delta smelt critical habitat.” BiOp at276-78. As required by law, the BiOp includes an RPAdesigned to allow the projects to continue operatingwithout causing jeopardy to the species or adversemodification to its critical habitat.
. at 279. TheRPA includes various operational components designed toreduce entrainment of smelt during critical times of theyear by controlling exports out of and water flows intothe Delta.
279-85.Component 1 (Protection of the Adult Delta Smelt LifeStage) consists of two Actions related to Old and MiddleRiver (“OMR”) flows.
Action 1, which is designed to protect upmigratingdelta smelt, is triggered during low and highentrainment risk periods based on physical andbiological monitoring. Action 1 requires OMR flowsto be no more negative than -2,000 cubic feet persecond (“cfs”) on a 14-day average and no more
Case 1:09-cv-00407-OWW-DLB Document 704 Filed 05/27/2010 Page 3 of 126