Lawsuit: Sawtooth Valley water diversions harming salmon

MGN PHOTO: Salmon underwater
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BOISE, Idaho (AP) — An environmental group says 23 water diversion projects in central Idaho's Sawtooth Valley are harming federally protected salmon, steelhead and bull trout and has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service.

The Idaho Conservation League in the 20-page complaint filed Monday in U.S. District Court says the federal agency is violating environmental laws by failing to do mandatory consulting on the projects with other federal agencies.

The group says the Forest Service instead continues approving the diversions in violation of the Endangered Species Act.

The group seeks a court order forcing the Forest Service to complete consultations with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries.

Sawtooth National Forest spokeswoman Julie Thomas says the agency doesn't comment on pending litigation.

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