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NW Fishletter
NWF.225/January 25, 2007
BPA, Corps Make Deal With Tribes Over 2007 Dam Operations

The Bonneville Power Administration and the Corps of Engineers have gone directly to lower Columbia and Colville tribal authorities to work out a deal for operating mainstem Columbia and Snake River dams in 2007. ...more

Niners Say BPA Must Continue Fish Passage Center Funding

A three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court ruled yesterday that BPA illegally cut funding to the Fish Passage Center after report language in a Congressional spending bill ordered them to end support for the 11-person group. The language was added to the bill by Idaho Sen. Larry Craig (R) who was furious that FPC analyses of fish survival were used by environmental groups in their successful push to get a federal judge to boost spill at federal dams, part of ongoing litigation over hydro operations on the Columbia and Snake rivers. ...more

Corps Says No Flex In 2007 Libby Dam Operations

The Corps of Engineers announced Jan. 5 that it would operate Montana's Libby Dam under "strict" VARQ [Variable Discharge] guidelines in 2007, after last year's flexible operations backfired and caused tens of millions of dollars in flood damage to crops and dikes near Bonners Ferry, Idaho. ...more

Feds Approve Puget Sound Recovery Plan, But Much Uncertainty Remains

NOAA Fisheries has formally accepted the salmon recovery plan for ESA-listed Puget Sound chinook and bull trout written by a huge group of regional players over the past few years that came together in a forum called the Shared Strategy. State and county agencies, municipalities, conservation and fishing groups, business interests, along with several tribes, worked together on different levels, including the 14 watersheds, estuaries and nearshore regions, to craft a plan they say will take decades, or maybe even a hundred years to recover the salmon stocks. ...more

Seattle Mixes Salmon With New Art Park

Seattle's new $85-million sculpture park includes a $5.7-million seawall and salmon restoration project where it steps down to meet the city's waterfront. But the question remains whether it will have any benefits for fish. ...more

Power Council Wades Into BC Coal Mine Controversy

The Northwest Power and Conservation Council agreed last week to send a letter to the British Columbia provincial government voicing its concern over the potential negative impacts to resources in Montana's Flathead Basin from a proposed coal mine just north of the U.S.-Canada border. ...more

Zebra Mussels Found In California's Lake Mead

A colony of dreaded zebra mussels, or one of its cousins, was spotted in early January in California's Lake Mead, the huge reservoir created by Hoover Dam. The mussels have created havoc in the Great Lakes and elsewhere, decimating natural ecosystems, and proliferating in cooling system pipes in everything from nuclear power plants to Mississippi River towboats. ...more

Idaho Governor Appoints New NPCC Member

Incoming Idaho Gov. Butch Otter has replaced Judi Danielson, one of the state's representatives to the Northwest Power and Conservation Council, with Bill Booth, a member of the governor's transition team. ...more

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