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NW Fishletter
NWF.389/January 7, 2019
NW Climate Scientists Prepare To Help Fish Survive As Region's Rivers Warm
Salmon and steelhead in the Pacific Northwest will face many challenges as the climate warms, according to the Fourth National Climate Assessment released by 13 federal agencies on Nov. 23. ...more
Groups Seek Court-Ordered Drawdowns For Corps' Willamette Project
Taking a page out of the environmental playbook that led to spilling water over dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers, three conservation groups are asking a federal judge to order deep drawdowns, spill and other operational changes at the Willamette Project to benefit Chinook and steelhead listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. ...more
New Law Streamlining Sea Lion Removal In Columbia Basin Passes
A bill that gives states and tribes more authority to kill sea lions that threaten fish runs in the Colum-bia Basin passed both houses of Congress in early December, and was signed into law by President Donald Trump. ...more
Inslee's Orca Budget Includes Funding For More Spill, Dam Breaching Task Force
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is asking the state Legislature to include $1.1 billion in its 2019-2021 budget to help Puget Sound's endangered orcas, including $750,000 to create a stakeholder process to look into breaching four lower Snake River dams. ...more
Agreement Breaks 'Groundhog Day Loop' For Hells Canyon Relicensing
After a decade-long stalemate over water quality certification at Idaho Power's Hells Canyon Complex, a major logjam in the company's quest for a new 50-year license from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) was broken in an agreement the utility reached Dec. 14 with the states of Oregon and Idaho. ...more
Fish And Wildlife Program Recommendations Posted, Open For Comment
The Northwest Power and Conservation Council has posted the recommendations it received to amend its Fish and Wildlife Program, and is accepting comments on them until Feb. 8. ...more
EPA Faces New Court Order Over Oregon's Water Temperature Plans
After finding more than a year ago that water temperature cleanup plans for rivers across Oregon must meet the biological needs of fish, a federal judge has asked the EPA, the state of Oregon and an environmental group to work together to develop a schedule to update those plans. ...more
Columbia Riverkeeper Sues Douglas County PUD Over Columbia River Oil Leaks
Columbia Riverkeeper filed a lawsuit against Douglas County PUD Dec. 11, alleging the discharge of pollutants--including oils, greases and other lubricants--at Wells Dam require a water pollution permit under the Clean Water Act. ...more
Judge Stays Order Requiring EPA To Set Columbia Basin Temperature Standards
A federal judge in Seattle granted the EPA's request to delay requirements of an Oct. 17 order that requires the agency to issue standards for water temperature on the Snake and Columbia rivers until the appeals process is complete. ...more
Idaho Reinstates Steelhead Fishing On Most Rivers
The Idaho Fish and Game Commission approved an agreement that allows the state's well-known Snake River steelhead season to remain open, except on two large tributaries, after five conservation groups agreed not to sue.more
Corps Investigates 192-Gallon Oil Spill At The Dalles
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is investigating the cause of a 192-gallon discharge of hydraulic turbine oil into the Columbia River at The Dalles Dam, and has initiated cleanup. ...more
Coleman Oil Disputes Ecology's Claims, Plans Appeal
A manager for Coleman Oil says his company disputes some of the Washington Department of Ecol-ogy's findings surrounding a Columbia River oil spill near Wenatchee, and plans to appeal its $189,000 fine to the state Pollution Control Hearings Board. ...more
Forecasters Await El Nino, Predict Below-Normal Runoff
Forecasters say this year's April through September water supply could be well below normal in Oregon, factoring in current conditions, precipitation forecasts over the next 10 days, and the likeli-hood that El Nino will influence weather over the next three months. ...more
Karier, Booth Retiring From Power Council
Two longtime members of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council--Tom Karier of Washington and Bill Booth of Idaho--bid farewell to fellow Council members Dec. 11, as their terms of service ended. ...more
California Files Draft Environmental Impact Report For Klamath Project
The California State Water Resources Board released a draft report outlining environmental impacts of a proposal to remove three Klamath River dams in California, and is accepting public comment until Feb. 26. ...more

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