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NW Fishletter
NWF.367/March 6, 2017
Arguments in BiOp Case Resume Over Spill, Capital Projects
Both sides of the BiOp case on the Federal Columbia River Power System and its impact on fish disagreed on the plaintiff-proposed injunction to increase spring spill at Columbia and Snake River dams and to postpone capital investment projects at four lower Snake River dams. ...more
Council Continues to Question Columbia Basin Habitat-Monitoring Projects
During several recent meetings of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council, members have expressed misgivings about ratepayer-funded projects aimed at assessing the effectiveness of habitat-restoration actions. Two NWPCC-approved habitat-monitoring projects and one BPA monitoring project have been slow to explain if they are helping guide fish managers' habitat work, according to several Council members. ...more
Snake River Fall Chinook Redd Count Robust for Third Year in a Row
Fall Chinook redd counts in the Snake River basin are strong for the third year in a row. A redd count summary by the Nez Perce Tribe put the 2016 number at 6,426. Only redds counted in 2014 and 2015 exceeded that number. ...more
Balancing Act at Dworshak More Acute with Turbine Out of Service
With Dworshak Dam's largest turbine out of service for a major overhaul, dam operators and salmon managers have been kept on their toes juggling flood-control requirements, total-dissolved-gas limits, and refill and flow-augmentation needs. ...more
State or FERC Jurisdiction at Issue in Pelton Round Butte Federal Case
Do citizens have the right to sue over alleged violations of the Clean Water Act or is their lawful recourse petitioning FERC? ...more
EPA Sued Over Temperature Pollution in Columbia and Snake Rivers
Five environmental and fishing groups took legal action Feb. 23 against the U.S. EPA over Clean Water Act violations. The lawsuit would compel the agency to develop a plan to limit high water temperatures in the Columbia and Snake rivers. ...more
New Council Webpages Show Columbia Salmon and Steelhead Goals
A new Northwest Power and Conservation Council mapping tool allows users to view and compare different restoration goals for Columbia River salmon and steelhead. The Natural Origin Salmon and Steelhead Adult Objectives Mapping Tool went live in February. ...more
Regional Water-Supply Forecast is Normal and Higher
The April-September water-supply forecast for the northern tier of the Columbia River Basin has increased. Predictions are for normal to slightly above-normal water supply in most of the basin's northern regions, according to the Northwest River Forecast Center. ...more
Bull Trout Suit Against Corps, BuRec and BPA Dismissed
A federal judge on Feb. 22 dismissed a case against the operators of 23 Columbia Basin dams that plaintiffs alleged violated Endangered Species Act requirements for bull trout habitat. A federal judge ruled the lawsuit was moot because the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had in the meantime submitted biological assessments for the challenged dams and initiated consultations. ...more

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