Oregon, Groups Seek Injunction To Increase Spill For Salmon, Steelhead; Drop Dam Pools To Speed Fish Through ‘Too Hot Reservoirs’

July 19th, 2021

The state of Oregon, as well as nearly a dozen conservation and fishing groups, filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Portland a request for a preliminary injunction that, if granted, would significantly increase spill next year at lower Columbia and Snake river dams and lower the operating pools behind the dams. The measures are intended to aid juvenile and adult salmon and steelhead migrating in the river.

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Federal Judge Orders Corps To Take Immediate Action To Protect ESA-Listed Willamette Valley Wild Spring Chinook, Steelhead; ‘No Patience For Further Delay’

July 15th, 2021

U.S. District Court Judge Marco Hernandez Wednesday outlined in a draft order Wednesday actions that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers must take to protect threatened wild spring chinook and winter steelhead at its Willamette Valley dams. The case has been in the courts for three years.

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Litigation

Biden EPA Reevaluating Trump Administration Rollback Of Washington State Water Quality Standards; ‘May Not Be Based On Sound Science’

July 15th, 2021

The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington last week approved the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to reevaluate the Trump administration’s rollback of Washington state water quality standards developed to protect people from toxic pollution.

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Litigation

Washington State Hearings Board Rejects Corps’ Appeal Of Clean Water Act Certifications Aimed At Reducing Columbia/Snake Water Temperatures

June 30th, 2021

The Washington State Pollution Control Hearings Board this week announced it intends to reject the Army Corps of Engineers’ challenge to the state’s Clean Water Act certifications requiring temperature limits for Columbia/Snake River dams and reservoirs to protect salmon and steelhead.

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Feds Seek To Dismiss Irrigators’ Claims In Salmon BiOp Case; Irrigators Challenge, Saying ‘Interests Directly Affected’

June 11th, 2021

Defendants in the latest challenge to the Columbia/Snake River biological opinion for salmon and steelhead and final environmental impact statement have questioned the cross-claims of the Columbia-Snake River Irrigators Association, saying the irrigators lack jurisdiction.

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Groups File Court Petition To Halt Clearcutting In Oregon’s Burned Santiam River Watershed; Home To ESA-Listed Spring Chinook, Steelhead

April 23rd, 2021

Seven conservation groups filed April 14 in Multnomah County Circuit Court a petition seeking to stop logging by Oregon Department of Forestry contractors of trees burned in wildfires last summer in the Santiam River watershed in Oregon. The logging is in process.

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Judge Sets Timeline For Challenge To Columbia River Salmon/Steelhead EIS/BIOP; Could Extend Well Into 2022

April 16th, 2021

A federal judge in Oregon has set a schedule for future litigation proceedings in the eighth challenge since 2001 to the federal biological opinion for threatened and endangered Columbia River basin salmon and steelhead. Activity begins this month and extends out to at least August 2022 when final summary judgement briefs are due to the court.

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Litigation

Conservation Groups File Complaint Against New Columbia River System Operations EIS, BiOp For Salmon, Steelhead

February 5th, 2021

Conservation groups have filed the opening complaint against the Columbia River System Operations 2020 Environmental Impact Statement and Biological Opinion for salmon and steelhead, kicking off yet another round of litigation over the federal approach to recovering these fish listed under the Endangered Species Act. The opening salvo shows breaching Lower Snake River dams will be a central issue in the coming courtroom battles.

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