In response to the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s October 5, 2018 request, the ISRP reviewed the report Grande Ronde Model Watershed Synthesis, 1992-2016 (GRMW Synthesis for project #1992-026-01) and considered the accompanying cover letter from the GRMW. This report is intended to address a condition that was placed on the project as part of the June 2017 Council decision regarding the performance review of the Fish and Wildlife Program’s Umbrella Habitat Restoration Projects. Specifically, the Council recommended that the GRMW develop a synthesis report that assesses “whether the actions and associated changes in the physical habitat have contributed to addressing limiting factors … and addresses, in a manner suited to the role served by this project, ISRP comments and qualifications on M&E and adaptive management.” The Council’s comments on the GRMW project further suggested that content of the GRMW Synthesis reflect that Umbrella Habitat Restoration Projects are habitat implementation projects and not research, monitoring, and evaluation projects (RME). An important expectation of the ISRP was that the GRMW project would rely on and collaborate with other RME experts in the basin to provide an initial evaluation of measurable/observable biological and physical changes and trends that could be related to past restoration actions and/or to inform future actions.
The Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act of 1980 authorized the creation of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council. The Act directed the Council to develop a program to protect, mitigate and enhance fish and wildlife in the Columbia River and its tributaries affected by the development, operation and management of the Columbia River dams. The Grande Ronde Subbasin Plan was prepared at the direction of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council.
The Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act of 1980 authorized the creation of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council. The Act directed the Council to develop a program to protect, mitigate and enhance fish and wildlife in the Columbia River and its tributaries affected by the development, operation and management of the Columbia River dams. The Imnaha Subbasin Plan was prepared at the direction of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council.
The goal of the Catherine Creek Tributary Assessment (CCTA) is to evaluate the overall status of the entire Catherine Creek watershed in order to identify and prioritize potential habitat restoration projects. A project of this scope can only be accomplished through the efforts of many people from several different organizations.
The Upper Grande Ronde Tributary Assessment (UGR TA) provides scientific information on geomorphology and physical processes that can be used to implement fish habitat improvement projects and to help focus those projects on increasing the survival of salmon and steelhead. The purpose of the UGR TA is to assess physical characteristics of streams and how they have changed over time; with the purpose of identifying suitable habitat improvement actions specific to that tributary. This project has had contributions from many partners, and is chaired by the Bureau of Reclamation.
BPA, GRMW and partners are developing an additional tool to focus restoration activities even more on the highest priority geographic areas, which address the most critical limiting factors and implement the most cost-effective activities. The Restoration Atlas will assist basin managers in:
- Prioritizing restoration activities in strategically defined locations
- Will provide the transition from the current model of opportunistic restoration to focused restoration of key reaches
- Facilitate collaborative, focused and value added restoration projects
The Atlas will centralize data and maps related to limiting factors, life history requirements, biologically significant reaches and habitat restoration opportunities. It will produce a scoring and ranking matrix to prioritize projects.
Expert Panel workshops are held every three years to evaluate changes in habitat limiting-factors for mainstem tributaries. The process includes both evaluating changes in habitat which are a result of previously completed projects, and estimating the expected change from projects planned for the next implementation cycle. Panel participants include a range of experienced professionals who are knowledgeable of local conditions, including the current and potential conditions of limiting factors.