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San Clemente Dam RemovAL & Carmel River RESTORATION

a story of federal, state and local partnerships

that saved a river 

A River in Renewal.


In summer of 2015 after years of planning and three years of de-construction, the 95 year-old and 106 foot tall San Clemente Dam was removed on the Carmel River.  The San Clemente Dam removal was to date the largest dam removal project in California.

Once blocked and disconnected, the Carmel River is now free-flowing allowing steelhead to access over 25 miles of spawning and rearing habitat upstream, letting sediment travel downstream to naturally replenish Carmel River beach, and resolving public safety issues associated with San Clemente Dam. Restoration of the site continues as the river “re-wilds”.
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