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San Francisco Utilities Commission Reassures Environmentalists

A spokesman for the Turlock Irrigation District says San Francisco´s plan to build a new Hetch Hetchy water transmission line will not seriously threaten the Tuolumne River.

That comes after the American Rivers environmental group placed the Tuolumne on its list of the nation´s ten most endangered rivers. The group placed the river at number eight on the list based on speculation that San Francisco will dramatically increase the amount of water it diverts from the river for municipal use.

Modesto City Councilman Denny Jackman says the viability of the river must be maintained.

Meanwhile the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission says it has no plans to take more water from the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, but rather the new line would be used solely for operations and maintenance, and would provide a backup system in case of a major earthquake.