Thanks to you, WaterWatch is celebrating thirty years of protecting and restoring streamflows in Oregon's rivers for fish, wildlife and the people who depend on healthy rivers.
Click on the links below to read our 30th Anniversary Newsletter and see our 2014 accomplishments and 2015 projects. The 30th anniversary newsletter summarizes many of the truly revolutionary gains for Oregon's rivers made possible by the support of people like you. These gains are why Oregon leads all western states in streamflow protection and restoration - and why WaterWatch serves as a model for streamflow protection and restoration in the West.
Please consider continuing your support ofthese programs and projects as we address the effects of climate change, growth and the legacy of antiquated water policies on some of the great rivers of the West here in Oregon.
Link to the 30th Anniversary Newsletter
Thank you for your support!
Phase I of the project is now complete and is already providing benefits to irrigation district patrons, the Rogue River and its fish. The first phase of the project installed a new headgate and fish exclusion system at the top of the irrigation district canal as well as 380 feetof pipe to replace the open canal diversion. In the fall of 2014, we rescued stranded fish and completed the first part of construction at the project.
Now, pending funding, Phase II will install and bury another 700 feet of pipe, install a measuring device and complete the project. Some grant proposals are pending that, if successful will provide some funding to complete the project. Many organizations and anglers are supporting the project. If funding is secured, Phase II should be completed in 2015.
When completed, this project will benefit the patrons of the irrigation district, leave more water in the Rogue River, and help the Rogue's fish.
Thanks to your support, we can report the following major successes.
The tools are now in place to restore streamflows in the 72 mile reach of the Crooked River between Bowman Dam and Lake Billy Chinook in the Deschutes Basin. Thanks to legislation passed at the end of the 113th Congress, federal managers can now release water from storage to restore this reach of the Crooked River for native redband trout, Endangered Species Act listed steelhead and to support Central Oregon's recreational economy. It's hard to overstate the significance of this accomplishment. In the West, there are very few river restoration projects of this magnitude. Thanks to your support, we are seeing one blossom in Central Oregon.
In the Rogue Basin, we are on the verge of removing the fourth and eight worst fish passage barriers in Oregon. Your gifts help support the project to remove Fielder and Wimer Dams from Evans Creek. These dams have been identified as key to restoring threatened coho salmon in the Rogue Basin. Thanks to you, we are moving towards removal of these obsolete dams in 2015.
Thanks to your support, WaterWatch is addressing the twin and synergistic threats of climate change and growth to our rivers. In the last two months, WaterWatch won two appellate court cases that require Oregon's growing cities to account for the needs of imperiled fish. These cases will help address the threats of growth and climate change on our rivers by requiring cities and state agencies to account and provide enough water to ensure that populations of imperiled fish persist into the future. The cases also require cities to perform basic water conservation and planning. Both are critical if we are to meet future water demands and maintain healthy rivers in Oregon.
Oregon rivers and aquatic species thank you!