Columbia and Snake river waters have warmed 1.5 degrees Centigrade since 1960 and the rivers could warm an additional 1.7 to 2 degrees C by 2100, all due to climate change, with implications for long-term salmon and steelhead survival.
Rather than ocean oxygen levels improving as they usually do this time of year, hypoxia off the Pacific Northwest coast is as bad as it’s been at any point in 2021, according to collaborative research by Oregon State University, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and Oregon’s crabbing industry.
Dams poorly mimic the temperature patterns California streams require to support the state’s native salmon and trout — more than three-quarters of which risk extinction. Bold actions are needed to reverse extinction trends and protect cold-water streams that are resilient to climate warming, according to a study published in the journal PLOS ONE by the University of California, Davis.
Intensive pumping of aquifers during drought can speed up deterioration of groundwater quality, according to a new study by the U.S. Geological Survey. The results highlight clean drinking water supply vulnerabilities in California and other western states currently experiencing record drought conditions.
Unchecked climate change may leave some Arctic predators surviving off of marine “junk food,” according to a new University of British Columbia study.
The Bureau of Reclamation has released the Missouri River Headwaters Basin Study that provides options to meet the increased water demand and a change in the timing of the snowmelt runoff in the Missouri River Basin above Fort Peck Reservoir. The basin covers about 50,000 square miles and is the primary water source for 320,000 people and about 1.1 million acres of irrigated lands.
Federal storage dams in the Willamette River basin are at an average of just 37 percent of capacity, hit hard this year by drought. Overall, they should be at nearly twice that – 68 percent capacity. And there is little in the weather forecast that will change that over the next few weeks.
The potent combination of dams and climate change are the major contributing factors of warm water temperatures impacting salmon and steelhead in the Columbia and Snake rivers, according to a document released by the Environmental Protection Agency this week.
The National Marine Fisheries Service denied two petitions this week that, if they had been approved, would have separated spring chinook from the fall chinook evolutionary significant unit along two areas of the Oregon and California coast. The petitions also asked for spring chinook, once separated from its fall chinook ESU, to be listed separately as a threatened or endangered species under the federal Endangered Species Act.