In reviewing Columbia Basin habitat and hatchery projects, a science review panel’s directive that sponsors draw linkages among projects drew the attention of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s Fish and Wildlife staff at a recent meeting, with staff telling Council members it was an inappropriate step during the current review process
In a preliminary report on Columbia River basin habitat and hatchery projects, a panel of scientists briefly stepped out of its role as reviewer and offered to the Northwest Power and Conservation Council and the Bonneville Power Administration some tips on how future project reviews should be conducted.
The Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s draft Northwest Power Plan now out for review suggests the increased use of solar power could lead to increased flow fluctuations in the Columbia/Snake river hydro system. The plan calls for further study on implications of future changing river flows for fish and power.
Tracking more than 300 Columbia River basin fish and wildlife projects is a daunting task, but a recent thorough review of the projects is attempting to more succinctly tie projects to the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program and to the Bonneville Power Administration’s strategic plan.
A long-running program that partners with ranchers and farmers in riparian areas to improve floodplain habitat on private lands and create climate change resiliency for salmon and steelhead has been successful across Oregon, Idaho and Washington, all leveraging Bonneville Power Administration fish and wildlife funding.
Money set aside as cost savings for fiscal year 2021 – some $450,000 – was approved this week to pay for asset management improvements at hatcheries and for fish screens before the end of the year, Sept. 30, 2021.
An emergency budgeting and funding mechanism for Columbia River basin fish and wildlife projects is in the process of getting a facelift. The Budget Oversight Group initially funded special projects or additions to projects already funded to the tune of $1 million a year.
A science panel recently completed reviews of Idaho and Montana habitat and mitigation projects for Libby Dam, the Kootenai River and Hungry Horse Dam and Reservoir. All three reviews address resident fish projects under the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program.
The timeline to review 124 Bonneville Power Administration-funded hatchery and habitat projects was laid out for the Northwest Power and Conservation Council at its meeting this week.