Printer Friendly

HIGHER RIVER FLOWS COULD HELP SOME FISH RUNS BUT HURT OTHERS, NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL TOLD

 HIGHER RIVER FLOWS COULD HELP SOME FISH RUNS BUT HURT OTHERS,
 NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL TOLD
 KALISPELL, Mont., July 9 /PRNewswire/ -- The following was released today by the Northwest Power Planning Council:
 Higher springtime flows in the Kootenai River could help boost the sturgeon population and aid salmon downstream. But power production at Libby Dam and trout in the Kootenai and Lake Kookanusa behind the dam could suffer as a result, experts told the Northwest Power Planning Council.
 Kootenai River white sturgeon are being considered for listing as a threatened species under the federal Endangered Species Act. The Kootenai, which flows through northwestern Montana and northern Idaho, is a tributary of the Columbia River, where four salmon runs in another tributary, the Snake, already are listed as threatened or endangered species.
 Boosting river flows by releasing additional water from behind storage dams could help improve the survival of Kootenai sturgeon and downstream salmon, but at a price paid by other river uses -- particularly in the Kootenai system, the experts said.
 "Increased flows could lead to reduced habitat for rainbow and bull trout," biologist Don Skaar of the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks told the council. He said recreation, which is an important industry in the area, and power production also could be affected.
 "This is a very difficult question," said John Brenden, one of Montana's two council members. "If you have an endangered species in Montana and you have an endangered species downstream, are we going to fight about whose endangered species is more important and whose deserves the water?"
 Stan Grace, council vice chairman and Montana's other council member, pointed out that Kookanusa water is released for power production at Libby Dam, but not to aid downstream salmon. Not yet, at least.
 Research suggests the Kootenai sturgeon population has not grown in 20 years, about the same time that Libby Dam has been operating. Montana and Idaho fish agencies are studying how to increase flows without damaging other fish or river uses, Skaar said.
 In another fishery issue, the council learned that Montana and the Confederated Kootenai and Salish Tribes are making progress on a program to improve the fishery in the Flathead River system. The program is designed to compensate for fishery impacts caused by the construction and operation of Hungry Horse Dam on the South Fork Flathead River.
 Jim Vashro of the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks said some work already is under way. Kokanee are being raised for release into the Flathead system. A dozen potential sites have been identified where habitat improvements could be made to aid spawning of wild fish. Populations of bull trout and cutthroat trout are being monitored, Vashro said.
 Brenden and Grace said they were pleased with the work so far. "We want to get fish back into the Flathead system," Brenden said.
 At Kalispell, the council also conducted a public hearing on proposed amendments to the Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program regarding salmon habitat and production. Because Montana doesn't have ocean-going salmon and receives no direct benefit from salmon recovery actions, those who testified urged the council to adopt measures that return the greatest benefit for the lowest cost.
 The Northwest Power Planning Council is an agency of the four Northwest states of Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. Each state has two members appointed by the governors. The council is responsible for planning long-range electric energy supplies for the Northwest and for protecting and enhancing fish and wildlife populations of the Columbia River Basin.
 -0- 7/9/92
 /CONTACT: Ti Dahlseide of the Northwest Power Planning Council, 406-444-3952/ CO: Northwest Power Planning Council; Montana Department of Fish,
 Wildlife and Parks ST: Oregon, Washington, Montana, Idaho IN: UTI SU:


LM-JH -- SE008 -- 8080 07/09/92 18:23 EDT
COPYRIGHT 1992 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 9, 1992
Words:633
Previous Article:DOE SELECTS FLUOR DANIEL SUBSIDIARY TO MANAGE TEAPOT DOME OIL FIELD AND GOVERNMENT OIL SHALE RESERVES
Next Article:FIRST COMMERCIAL BANCSHARES ANNOUNCES RECORD EARNINGS
Topics:


Related Articles
NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL APPROVES SALMON RECOVERY MEASURES
FISHERIES SERVICE APPLAUDS COUNCIL SALMON RECOVERY EFFORT
NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL: FISHERIES SERVICE DIRECTOR SCHMITTEN PRAISES COUNCIL SALMON RECOVERY PLAN
WASHINGTON STATE DEPARTMENT OF ECOLOGY: ENDANGERED SALMON STATUS CAUSES HOLD ON SOME WATER RIGHTS
NMFS DECISION IS NO SURPRISE, SAYS POWER PLANNING COUNCIL
NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL SAYS DESPITE DROUGHT, WATER RECREATION ON COLUMBIA, SNAKE RIVERS WILL BE NORMAL THIS SUMMER
NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL ASKS CONGRESS FOR MONEY FOR SALMON RESTORATION
NORTHWEST POWER PLANNING COUNCIL: REGIONAL LEADERS RE-COMMIT TO RESTORING SALMON RUNS IN THE COLUMBIA AND SNAKE RIVERS
The history and legislative background of the Northwest Power Act.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters