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About the Program
Learn More About the Program
 
 

 Background and History

 
Efforts to re-license Kingsley Dam on the North Platte River in western Nebraska, the presence of threatened and endangered species, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's 1994 Biological Opinion on Platte River operations provided the backdrop for conflict over the Platte's vital water. Learn more...
 

 Program Goals, Governance and Managment

 
The program is being implemented in an incremental manner, with the first increment covering a 13-year period from 2007 through 2019. Learn more...
 

 Program Area

 
While the program is designed to provide ESA compliance for existing and certain new water related activities throughout the Platte River basin upstream of the Loup River confluence, the land acquisition and management for the target bird species will occur in the central Platte River region. Learn more...
 

 Program Costs and Cost Sharing

 
The program is estimated to cost roughly $320 million in 2005 dollars with the monetary portion of that being $187 million. The federal government will contribute $157 million in cash, and Colorado and Wyoming will jointly contribute $30 million. Learn more...
The program's objective is to use incentive-based water projects to provide sufficient water to and through the central Platte River habitat area to assist in improving and maintaining habitat for the target species. During the first increment, the program will focus on re-timing and improving flows to reduce target flow shortages by an average of 130,000 to 150,000 acre-feet per year. In addition to the improved flow conditions, small pulse flows in the spring are intended to create vegetation-free sand bars suitable for plover and tern nesting. Read more...
The program objective during the first increment is to protect, restore and maintain 10,000 acres of habitat. The program's long-term objective for land is to acquire land interests, restore where appropriate, and maintain and manage approximately 29,000 acres of suitable habitat along the central Platte River between Lexington and Chapman. Land acquired during this increment will be credited to this longterm objective as will certain lands meeting criteria established by the Governance Committee but are managed by other entities, such as environmental organizations or utility and irrigation districts. Read more...
An Adaptive Management Plan (AMP), which provides a systematic process to test hypotheses and apply the information learned to improve management decisions, is central to successful program implementation. The AMP was a collaboration between program partners and cooperators under the guidance of experts from around the country and is centered on priority hypotheses that reflect different interpretations of how river processes work and the best approach to meeting program goals. Read more...