The project will redesign and modify the irrigation dam and diversion works at the Gold Hill Irrigation District on the Rogue River in Oregon. The dam constricts the main stem of the river and diverts much more water than is allowed by the district's water right. In addition, the dam and headworks divert migrating salmon and steelhead into a lethal canal and a by pass system that kills salmon and steelhead. Donations would help leverage grants to complete the project.
The Gold Hill irrigators divert water through a dam that crosses about 3/4ths of the main stem Rogue River. This dam is now the highest ranked priority for removal in the Rogue River Basin. This dam harms migrating salmon and steelhead on the Rogue and diverts much more water than is allowed by the district's water right.
WaterWatch and the Gold Hill Irrigation District have entered into a cooperative agreement and developed a plan to fix the diversion to benefit fish and the Rogue River while also meeting the irrigation needs of the district. Donations would help leverage grants and other funds to assist with the construction phase of the project.
This project will allow more adult wild Rogue River salmon, steelhead, and trout to migrate up and down the river safely, increasing overall spawning and survival success. The project will also allow the irrigators to continue using water, but more efficiently. Finally, the project will leave more water in the Rogue River for fish, wildlife, and boaters. Increased river health will in turn help the economy of communities in the Rogue Basin.