Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
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SAVING THE KLAMATH SALMON: Development of an Intervention Strategy
or What to Do Between Disaster Relief and the Dams Coming Down
Thursday, 20 July 2006 Humboldt Area Foundation Office Conference Room
373 Indianola Road Bayside, CA 95524
0940 – Introduction by Zeke Grader.
Dave Bitts (Commercial Fisherman), Matt St. John (Northcoast Regional Water Quality Control Board), Eric Bjorkstedt (National Marine Fisheries Service), Jim Simondet (NMFS), Irma Lagomarsino (NMFS), Pete Nelson, Jeff Blumenthal (Institute for Fisheries Resources), Crescent Calimpong (IFR), Zeke Grader (IFR), Vivian Helliwell (IFR), Eli Asarian (Kier Associates/IFR), Bill Kier (Kier Associates/IFR), Susan Corum (Karuk Tribe), Tami Clayton (Karuk Tribe), Larry Hanson (California Department of Fish and Game), Ron Reed, Mike Long (United States Fish and Wildlife Service), Nicholas Hetrick (USFWS), George Kautzky (Hupa Tribe), Mike Orcutt (Hupa Tribe), Troy Fletcher (Yurok Tribe), Ryan Benson (Yurok Tribe), Paula Yoon (Fisheries Focus/Redwood Regional Watershed Center), Connie Stewart (Assemblymember Patty Berg’s office), Liz Murgia (Congressman Mike Thompson’s office), Jimmy Smith (Humboldt County Board of Supervisors, District 1), Mitch Farro (Pacific Watershed Association).
Purpose of Meeting, Review and Approve/Modify Agenda
USFWS report moved to later in the afternoon. Agenda approved.
Zeke Grader: This meeting was called on short notice due to urgency and we tried to get all the appropriate parties here for this meeting while keeping the meeting small. Dave Bitts: I was not planning to be here. I wanted to make opener for fishing season, which is big part of reason we are here. We are here because I am not fishing because Klamath fish are stressed and I am unable to fish. I have been impressed with Council and everything that they have done, which is a lot except address flows. Even after year of high flows, fish are still dying due to parasite. It may not matter if we get flows 5-10 years from here if the parasite is not gone. We need to develop an action plan for now and in the future. The question is, who is going to provide leadership? Bill Kier: Klamath Basin agency work appears disjointed- it lacks a programmatic approach to monitoring. I sense that agencies are retreating from the Klamath basin at precisely the time when they need to be addressing Klamath more than ever. It seems agencies are moving their energy to the Humboldt Bay region and elsewhere. However, these are simply notions that I have gathered through gossiping, hearsay more than anything else. But it is a definite overall sense that I have.
FEDERAL AGENCY REPORTS
National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA) Irma Lagomarsino: The Southwest Region of NMFS is involved in a broad array of partnerships and programs in the Klamath Basin under the authorities of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the Federal Power Act and the Endangered Species Act. Reflecting NMFS multiple roles in the Klamath Basin and Pacific salmon fishery issues, NMFS is considering an expanded role in facilitating collaborative approach for monitoring, research and restoration for salmon. Accordingly, NMFS is initiating a multi-stakeholder process to develop collaborative tools and products that identify, integrate, and prioritize salmon monitoring, research and restoration activities and programs. Such tools would maximize benefits from existing efforts and show how the efforts fit together in the Basin as a whole. This effort would also identify additional, unfunded needs. While long-term management programs are being formulating in the Klamath Basin, NMFS is initiating a multi-stakeholder 6-month effort to bring all the partners in one place to work together. NMFS is working with fisheries consultants Paul Hoobyar and Jim Rapp to facilitate the collaborative process. NMFS is trying to create a tool that they hope will be something that could be universally used by those entities conducting monitoring, research and restoration efforts in the Klamath Basin. Establishing the capacity to collaboratively coordinate and prioritize salmon monitoring, research and restoration is a fundamental step in developing a cohesive vision for long-term Klamath River restoration.
Irma Lagomarsino of NMFS spoke to the budget constraints of NMFS and the current political climate that is both adding opportunities and making it harder on salmon related budgets. Irma acknowledged the loss of NMFS-SWR funding, reporting there is less and less every year. For instance, NMFS provides annual grants to the State of California and to the Klamath River Inter- Tribal Fish and Water Commission through the Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund
(PCSRF). California integrates these funds with their state salmon restoration funds and issues grants for habitat restoration, watershed planning, salmon enhancement, research and monitoring, and outreach and education. The PCSRF grants have been used to leverage additional state and local salmon recovery dollars and have lead to a substantial increase in restoration funding in the Klamath River Basin. While recent reductions in the state’s funding have elevated the importance of NMFS’s PCSRF in California, California’s proportional share of the PCSRF in FY06 was reduced by 50 percent which further slows the rate of salmon restoration throughout California, including in the Klamath Basin. Irma did not have the numbers on how much funding was lost to the Klamath Basin in the last few years or how much is currently being spent in the state but thought she could get those numbers Irma said they have two vacancies in her Arcata office that remain unfilled due to lack of sufficient funding which puts and overall strain on all staff in her office, including those staff dedicated to Klamath issues NMFS provided to FERC, sect. 18 prescriptions, that would have huge benefits to Klamath River Chinook and coho salmon because they require volitional fish passage throughout the PacifiCorp hydroelectric project area. Under section 10 of the Federal Power Act, NMFS recommended dam decommissioning. NMFS is also working with ranchers and farmers in the Scott River Valley and Shasta River Valley area to improve farming, ranching and irrigation practices. The Coho has been listed since 1997 but there is still no recovery plan. NMFS is in the process of preparing a SONCC coho recovery plan (which includes populations of coho in the Klamath Basin) and expects to have a draft prepared by June 2007. Troy Fletcher: Troy said we need to get to a point where we are supporting all fish. The narrow single species focus compromises our ability to get together and get to a solution. It is almost counter to where we want to go with the bigger picture; we get caught up on it, and spend a lot of time just focusing on the narrow picture. I think we need to take a top down approach. I hate to see some of the good mind and skills going to narrow question of ESA protection. I do think there is support for a coordinated approach, if we can affect things from the top down. I don’t think until we take this larger look anything will get fixed in the Klamath. The ESA is needed to protect fish but the ESA doesn’t protect harvestable fish. We need to get away from that. Mike is pushing a recovery plan very hard. Let’s help push past a recovery plan. We have got to focus on a healthy river system. Otherwise Dave will always be a week late. Eric Bjorkstedt: All those points are very well taken. We are not shooting for minimal numbers. The notion of recovery in a true ESA has two components, one component is don’t let the ESA listed species go extinct and another component is broad recovery. Mitch Farro: Six million that is there is getting redirected towards something else. Currently the House mark for these funds is $20 million dollars for the whole Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Funds, which includes Alaska, but there is a little door open in the Klamath. Jimmy Smith: We need to come up with Interim measures. Jimmy really wanted to emphasize that we cannot wait until the fish are dead to step in and do something.
STATE AGENCY REPORTS California Department of Fish & Game Larry Hanson: The Department of Fish and Game is also seeing funding limitations: There is currently $10 million dollars that the governor allocated to the Klamath Basin with no stings attached and no process of how it should be spent. Out of the $10 million dollars, 9.5 million is going to the department and $ .5 million dollars is going to Coastal Conservancy to do dam studies. This one-time money is outside of normal restoration funds and none of the money is earmarked for people actually doing the work, biologists are going to be lost. This year there was a shuffle of the grants money the department usually gets and this year, in lieu of the Tidelands dollars getting committed for multiple year funding, the department got this new money. The Department of Fish and Game is involved in an adult monitoring program in the Klamath Basin with some juvenile monitoring. DFG does adult recovery surveys and is involved in a cooperative effort on the Salmon, Scott and Shasta Rivers with the Karuk Tribe and Fish and Wildlife Service. DFG uses coded wire tags and has weir activities on the Trinity River. DFG does run size estimates and marking studies. There are counting facilities on Shasta and Bogus creek. Larry would have liked Phil Barrington at the meeting to talk about DFG’s activities in the Klamath. Vivian Helliwell: The Department of Fish and Game sent a representative, Caitlin Bean to the Shasta TMDL public hearing. She asked the Board to not put minimum flow language in the TMDL because DFG doesn’t want to jeopardize the cooperation they have between the landowners in that area and the Department. She asked the NCWQCB to take out the 45cfs language. Larry was made aware of this presentation. Vivian said we have to address flows. Matt St. John: Staff analysis identified a link between surface water flow and temperature, and identified a need for increased dedicated cold water in stream flow by 45 cfs. What actually shows up in the Shasta River TMDL Action Plan is a goal of increasing dedicated cold water instream flow by 45cfs in 5-years from EPA adoption of the TMDL. The action plan encourages existing efforts and identified that it is possible to increase cold water flows, and the opportunity is there. There is a 5 year time line, and every 2, 4, 5 years, the agencies are required to come to the Board to report on the progress of increasing water flow to the goal of 45 cfs. Regional Water Quality Control Board has no authority to change water rights; this is under the jurisdiction of the Division of Water Rights within the State Water Resources Control Board. Zeke Grader: Larry, what things do you imagine are going to require funding and what things are need to get done that aren’t’ getting done? Larry Hanson: Information needs to be quantified into sub-basin stocks. In-river harvest funding is diminishing. The Bureau of Reclamation is looking at 2 year olds but hasn’t been able to perform the creel upriver , something that hasn’t been preformed once in the last 4 years. The Task Force no longer has funding. Mike Orcutt: I think the thing for me in both Irma’s and Larry’s presentation, we know what needs to be done and what is not being done, the question is how do we get into the political loop to affect funding? The reality of getting funding is getting into the loop, which is the key. There is a lot of political attention surrounding the Klamath, how do we harness that and get money to bring back healthy runs of fish? The Bureau of Reclamation and the US EPA were both invited but were a no show. They need to be brought in. There needs to be follow-up, there are a couple of pointed questions that the EPA and BOR should have been here to answer. Connie Stewart: Everybody needs to get around the idea that you have to figure out how to talk about your needs to get money. The fear is that the Shasta/Scott region will get all the money because they know how to talk to the legislature. Literally, disaster relief, everybody gets it. You need to be able to talk to legislators so they get what you are asking for, you have got to figure out how to put in context- does monitoring mean that Dave gets to fish? Jimmy Smith: We need an information trail that is going to be statistically sound. Most of that framework is there but we don’t have the comprehensive information yet. Larry Hanson: Monitoring efforts are not a fix, it is part of evaluating effects. Eli Asarian: Keep in mind of long-term monitoring. There are different kinds of monitoring. There is also more research type stuff, what are the links behind flows, etc.
North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board Matt St. John: Katherine Kuhlman, Executive Officer, and TMDL Unit supervisor David Lealand, wanted me to express their appreciation for calling this meeting. As far as TMDLs, the Scott and Salmon River TMDLs were adopted by our boards last year. The Scott River was adopted by the State Board last month. The Shasta River TMDL was adopted by the regional board, and is now going to the State Board. The Water Quality Control Board is an appointed board, they are political appointees that make decisions, and the board really listens to public comment. At the Scott River TMDL State Board meeting the presence of the commercial fishing voice was important to the outcome. Matt said the board is responsive to public comments, particularly those in writing. The Board is not on schedule to meet the Klamath River TMDL consent decree (i.e., entered into in PCFFA v. Marcus). The Board is moving for an extension and we will develop a revised schedule, which will likely include agency and Tribal review prior to peer and public review. California state law requires peer review and public review. There will be a workshop and then two board meetings. Analytical approach relies a lot on a water quality model, which build upon the PacifiCorp water quality model. We are going to rely on fishery biologists to help us best quantify how water quality conditions affect incidence of fish disease in the Klamath. There is a request for folks to help us with that analysis. With that in mind, our board has requested that we give an update on fish kills. At the October Board meeting in Weaverville, staff will make a presentation to the Board on this subject, including both the 2002 adult kill and juvenile kills; an update will be given and we may ask for your assistance in preparing the presentation. Following the technical analysis, staff needs to make a regional action plan, which is required to include schedules and enforcement as well as a monitoring plan. We are collaborating with the Oregon Board at least monthly by conference call. We are developing a single model, which will in part quantify natural baseline conditions. The Water Board is in the process of establishing a riparian policy. The Klamath Fish Health Assessment Team is a coordinated effort between the Tribes and other agencies. The Team has made an alert system, much like the current terrorism system. The alert system for the Klamath River is now on yellow for steelhead, as a result of a combination of things, including water quality, dead fish observed on the river, and the presence of disease. Briefly, we have a timber harvest division. We are involved with reviewing both federal and private harvest plans. We have a non point source program to deal with agricultural runoff and other non-point source issues. Our Board recently identified the Scott and Shasta non point source issues as a high priority within our region. Two staff have been assigned to implementation of Scott and Shasta TMDLs. Our SWAMP program is doing more monitoring in the Klamath basin. We have a unit that administers grants. They address projects on forest roads like decommissioning and upgrading. We are developing a contract to establish a Klamath Basin Regional Water Quality Monitoring Program, through a #275K grant from USEPA. The purpose of that program is to try and provide the framework for the institutionalization and implementation of a monitoring program. This type of coordination has to rise above a staff level because staff come and go and there needs to be consistency with the program. Finally, if you or those you know are not on mailing list let Matt St. John know and you will be put on the mailing list. Matt was informed of the request to look into the hatchery’s role in disease in the river. The door is open for input as to what needs to be in the implementation plan for it to be enforceable. I am on the technical part of analysis but the staff whose part it is to implement the TMDL would like input very much. If you have specific things like upslope management, contact Holly Lunberg or Diana Henrioulle. In response to Mitch Farro, Matt was surprised to hear that the grant administration process was putting an extra burden on projects that were aiming to reduce future sediment load. Matt acknowledged the Boards error in putting the Tribes to speak last at the December Board meeting and said that staff has been working to incorporate the Tribes better. It was noted by Susan Corum that the Tribes are not allowed to be part of the Scott TMDL technical advisory group. Susan asked why this was so.
Lunch: 12:15-1:10 pm
FEDERAL AGENCY REPORTS US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS)
Nicholas Hetrick: The USFWS has about 20 different projects in various stages of completion within the Klamath Basin, excluding work on the Trinity. These projects include long term routine monitoring type work and more specific type studies, some of which are in a peer review process. The first segment of the Hardy Phase II draft is under review by the Hardy Technical Team. That project has been long ongoing. Dr. Hardy, will submit a draft of the full report to the National Academy of Sciences for review on Thurs. USFWS, Tribes, and CDFG were involved in data collection to provide information needed by Dr. Hardy for his report. The USFWS has also provided money for the Scott River and Shasta River RCD’s to develop habitat assessment plans for these important drainages. USFWS is also looking at other avenues for how to get this process off the ground. There are many parallel efforts that are happening right now but there is a lack of an overall, integrated monitoring and research plan for the Klamath Basin. The joining of forces and combining funds is not being done as well as it should be. The USFWS just completed a 2-d fish passage analysis of Pecwan Riffle. Passage timing data were supplied by the Yurok Tribe. A report should be available for review in 2 months. The USFWS is currently working collaboratively with the Yurok, Hoopa, and Karuk Tribes, the state of CA, Humboldt State, Utah, Idaho, Texas State Universities, and USGS offices in Cook Washington and Fort Collins CO. The coho smolt survival migration study will be released next week in its final form that is a precursor to this year’s study. The goal of the project is to estimate survival of hatchery and wild coho salmon smolts from Iron Gate Dam down to the estuary. Looking to expand and potentially include the Trinity in future years. A comparison of survival between the Klamath and Trinity would be interesting from a fish health perspective. It would be very interesting to compare survival rates of juvenile fish as they migrate down the two rivers and as the enter the lower Klamath below the confluence. Another project of interest is a summary report of water quality conditions in the Klamath River from 2001-2005 using water quality data collected by Yurok and Karuk Tribes and the Service. The USFWS is working with 2 individuals from University of Texas, Austin on water quality and nutrient analysis. Dr’s George Ward and Neal Armstrong are two of the more well respected experts in the field. Mike Long: The USFWS budget is holding or shrinking slightly. Trinity restoration program’s congressional level is $2.4 million dollars; the Klamath River Flow Study gets $750,000, which comes out to be about $570,000 by the time it gets to the field. Both the senate and house have that amount in there [for FY07]. The only decline would be a matter of inflation as fixed costs go up, and buying power goes down each year. The actual Klamath Task Force is going away. The money is proposed to stay in the USFWS budget. Hopefully the money will continue to be used in the Basin, as the money cannot be used to support the task force unless authorized. The overall program apparently did not have a ‘champion’ push for it back in DC. Most of the budget are line items that have been in there for so many years, that they become base budget. There is recognition that those resources need to be in basin and are clearly recognized as Klamath money. Troy Fletcher: Processes like FERC and other things like the 2001 curtailment, relief for farmers sometimes slow down things rather than help move forward. Troy worked with Feinstein to put money into salmon on the Klamath, money that eventually got hacked. The challenge is to get past us vs. them. That is where it was probably premature to reauthorize Klamath Act. Nicholas Hedrick: There is a lot of talk about an integrated plan for Klamath Basin, but there seems to be a lot of disjunction as well. Water Quality, plans for flow studies, the BOR’s CIP,
NOAA NMFS process they described this morning, etc. I think it would be beneficial to have a process that recognizes and welcomes stake holder input and to have everybody agree up front on what work needs to be done. Bill Kier: It is hard to hustle more money when you can’t explain what it is you are doing and what it is you did with the last money. Dave Bitts: The task force got a B+ from the Government Accountability Office which got certain congressman off our back. Vivian Helliwell: Who provides oversight for the money that was provided to the Shasta and Scott rivers for studies- $30,000 for each to develop a plan for a flow study? Nicholas Hetrick: The RCD’s are the leads, with technical expertise provided by USFWS and experts in specific fields. Bill Kier: So the money is still sitting on the table? Matt St. John: There is an opportunity for coordination with the NCRWQB for a flow study. There was criticism that the county was given that to oversee. Bill Kier: The County was given that responsibility under the Scott River TMDL, but NCRWQCB supervisor Dr. Ranjit Gil says the county can reassign that responsibility elsewhere – that it has that ability. Nicholas Hetrick: Habitat assessment type studies are hard to conduct because access is key. In order to conduct a functional study of flow and habitat, the USFWS needs access along several spots along the river, which some landowners may be unwilling to provide. There are some areas with access, but they do not encompass all the locations we would need to sample at. Irma Lagomarsino: As a tangent, the ITP that the state is working on requires state access, which allows access to property. The CDFG also sees value in doing a flow study. It is great to know what minimum instream flows needs for the fish and the timing and where. In order to get this information we have got to get access and one of those ways is through the ITP process. You need cooperation from landowners to access private property. Nicholas Hetrick: The Scott and Shasta are at a triage level, you know you have an issue if you are doing fish rescues. Flow on the Scott River is around a 10% exceedence level whereas the exceedence level for the Shasta and Salmon is about 90%, which is expected given the wet water year. This is a huge issue that needs to be addressed. At my level, requests for information are handed down as specific tasks. There may be limited knowledge as to why we are asked to do specific things, and there has recently been a few of these requests asking for lists of current projects and lists of conceptual projects that would meet a critical data need. Dr. Winton from USGS lab went to DC with a model for an integrated monitoring and research plan for fish health for the Klamath and got pretty close to getting it passed. My understanding was that it was almost there Zeke Grader: There is a $40 million in a disaster package and we are talking about $10 million dollars in California. You are the ones who know what your needs are and we need a facilitated response in which the money will filter down to the right places. Irma Lagomarsino: Legislators regularly ask for a budget from NOAA that eventually goes to Congress. Irma said she could get a skeletal framework working document of NOAA’s needs in the basin. Zeke wanted this information to develop a budgetary plan, something that would outline current needs. The Klamath Basin is currently on yellow alert but there are no steps by which to address a yellow alert so it doesn’t advance into a red alert. Susan Corum from the Karuk Tribe, said the alert system is an alert system to advise people but it is nothing more than an informative tool. Increasing flows might bring the alert down but there are no prescribed steps when the river hits a certain level. This year there were higher flows than usual and temperatures are not going up as fast but there is still disease in the river.
Yurok Tribal Government Troy Fletcher: Troy would like to see the thinking in the Klamath Basin move from single species rescue to a focus on restoring the overall health of the Basin. Troy believes it is not a fish issue, it is a community stability issue and there won’t be stability unless fish are caught, and there won’t be stability if Dave is not catching fish. There has to be recognition but after the recognition there has to be action. Troy would like to see the Basin coming together as a whole and congress giving guidance, which would include stability for agriculture as well as fish in the river. Troy believes the action has to come from the regional directors but the regional directors need DC support, and the regional directors hand out clear mandates of how their staff needs to work together. Troy believes that this action needs to be built into the regional staff’s performance standards, which might force action to be continually made and come at the problems in the Basin from a top down approach. The Yurok Tribe has been working closely with the Department of the Interior to identify current and future budgetary needs. The Yurok Tribe is trying to fill the niche of being advocates for fish rather than occupy a co-management role. Troy believes in order for anything to happen in the Basin everyone must coordinate in an appropriate way and he believes no one will get anywhere unless Walden is brought in. Troy believes because of the political climate, no one has to work together, he believes no one can stop what happened the last few years, but we are all paying the price. Troy believes existing funds need to be used efficiently basin wide to stretch existing dollars. Troy said the Yurok Tribe hasn’t seen an increase in funding since 1993, and instead has seen some small reductions in their funding while salaries continue to climb. The Yurok Tribe has been successful in working with Bureau of Reclamation in obtaining funding from Trinity and funding from the Klamath office but funding is still dependent on the whim or the area manager and project, there is no coordinated approach. Troy says there are no clear set priorities Basin wide, the Tribe doesn’t get consulted and that needs to change. While the Yurok Tribe does get money through the Salmonid Recovery fund, there is no consistent, dependable fund of money. Most of the money the Yurok get goes to specific projects, which are all deliverables, but Troy believes the Tribe needs to participate in the larger issue. He emphasized core funding is very important. Troy believes there is an opportunity with the current political climate to have a summit between Walden, Thompson and others to talk about the themes of economic and social stability within the basin and create a joint approach that will address Basin-wide needs. Troy said this is a crisis and there is not going to be a fishery for a while or substantial fishery for years. Walden recently wrote a letter, which is an opening for a coordinated summit. Zeke thought that there might be the possibility to insert implementable language into some appropriation bills that would mandate coordination and utilization of each other’s resources. Paula Yoon: There is development of a Klamath Basin conference this November. The conference is a result of informal stakeholder meetings over the past 2 years engaging in a “Chadwick process” communications which has brought together stakeholders to discuss the watershed interests. Through this process, stakeholders have shared their experiences. The hope is that Klamath grassroots organizations will develop agreements on how to proceed to guide the agencies to support the grassroots development of the basin plan, which will include a substantial restoration element. Paula is on the conference steering committee and is participating to assure that session topics address all interests. The results of this meeting will facilitate development of those pertinent issues. Paula will get back to the group with the conference agenda and make recommendations for topics that include today’s discussions. Ryan Benson: The Yurok tribe works on Coho juvenile telemetry in coordination with the USFWS, as well as tagging efforts of adult Chinook at the estuary, which are tracked until they reach Iron Gate and Lewiston dams. The Yurok tribe uses radio tags and last year they used sonic tags. The tribe also does green sturgeon telemetry. Currently they are monitoring the tagged fish, and several tagged sturgeon has been detected in the Umpqua River, OR, Gray’s Harbor, WA, and Vancouver Island, BC. The tribe has also tagged 14 Pacific Lamprey in a pilot study. The Tribe conducts thermal Refugia dives, which is an ongoing effort since 2001. The tribe dives in the cold-water refugia and lower tributaries in the lower Klamath on a weekly basis. The dives give a good indication of disease level because the biologists can tell if the fish are packed in, or if there is there is gill rot present. Right now river flows have been really high and turbid. Right now there are no fish, while there should be lots compared to years past, but there are not a whole lot of juveniles yet. The main stem Klamath is really starting to heat up. Ultimately the tribe is trying to keep long term data set under different water year types. The Yurok tribe has also been doing juvenile fish disease work, cooperating with Oregon State to do water quality monitoring. The tribe collects water samples and does adult Chinook salmon pathology monitoring. The tribe started in 2003 monitoring Blue Creek to the confluence at Weitchepec, keeping tabs on Ich and Columnaris disease levels. The tribe keeps a long term data set under different water year types. The diseases in the river are naturally occurring but gets elevated when fish are close together and under the right conditions disease levels will just shoot up, usually beginning in August and ending in October. Troy Fletcher: The Yurok Tribe gets a lot of funding from the BOR and the Salmonid Recovery fund but the Tribe needs to get solid funding. It is also very hard for the Tribes to get funding for lamprey and sturgeon studies. Troy would like snip technology to be looked into for use in the Klamath Basin and thinks it is better than micro satellite. He said Humboldt State is doing work in that area.
Hupa Tribal Government Mike Orcutt: The Hupa are very involved in Klamath issues because the healthy existence of the Klamath River represents a way of life to the Hupa. The Hupa Tribe has 2200 members. The Hupa Tribe has been involved in Trinity River restoration for a long time. There are a lot of challenges that the Hupa Tribe faces, including a lack of adequate funding. The Hupa Tribe is $3million short of what they got last year. It is important to the Hupa Tribe to show that the volumes of water are a success in order to keep the water in the river, since water demand is not going away. The allocation issue and division of resources are clear now but the dwindling of resources is not in anyone’s interest. Trinity fish don’t exist in isolation and the Tribe is very supportive of the reintroduction of fish into the upper basin. Tribes like the Hupa are dependent on fish populations that haven’t been around since the dams were put into place on the river. The Hupa Tribe co-manages some of the weirs and participates in an out migrant sampling program. The Tribe is installing a weir trap in Junction City today. The future of Iron Gate dam is a little uncertain. The Klamath River Task Force ends in October but we are not going away. The Hupa Tribe is participating deeply in the FERC relicensing process and the Tribe is currently preparing for the administrative hearings that are coming up in August. Mike mentioned the Conservation Implementation Plan as a vehicle for some activities in the basin, or maybe not given its controversy. Mike also mentioned the Energy Policy Amendments. Troy Fletcher: People are encouraged to weigh in on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). PacifiCorp has disputed all kinds of facts, prescriptions for fish and statements from the wildlife service. The DEIS is Sept 25, and the decision on material fact from the judge will come on Sept 29, so it is important to weigh in on DEIS because FERC won’t be able to do adequate job until there is a decision. Troy had not seen a draft. The EIS on the Trinity River had a lot of work put into it from the Tribes. Troy doesn’t think they are going to cover much in this EIS, since the area project affects is under debate. The Yurok Tribe believes the area the project affects is into Morro Bay and Washington. George Kautzky: The Trinity River and Klamath Basin are suffering from 40 years of diversions. The rivers are not able to function as a home for fish. Fish need diversity and with dam in place, fish don’t have the diversity of sediment or habitat. Due to dams the rivers are not able to meander, wide river bars are lost. Due to loss of sediment and river management, high burms have replaced the shallow resting areas, resulting in a narrower channel and loss of juvenile rearing areas. River channels are armored with riparian boundaries which does not help fish. River channels need to be designed to be diverse. Trees need to tear torn out, vegetation is good to keep water cool but river needs to be able to have spiky channel to allow natural channel reshaping. There is no overall, annual monitoring, which is needed. The Hupa Tribe needs $2-3 million dollars for both fishery management and habitat. If folks want to get together and do overall monitoring program George is all for it. On the Trinity River the Tribe was able to identify 40% escapement but further marking would cost more, so the Tribe marked 25% of the fish. George thinks it needs to be identified at a Basin wide what level what kind of marking is appropriate and what is needed for management. Snipping of fins for DNA sampling is very appealing but we need to figure out what we are trying to answer.
Karuk Tribal Government Ron Reed: Approximately 75% of Karuk funds come from the Salmon Recovery Fund. There are a lot of Tribal entities coming into basin saying that the Karuk need to be a part of the coordination. The Karuk Tribe need funding. Not having the US Forest Service at the meeting is problematic for the Karuk since the biggest component of ancestral land is owned by the Forest Service, so the Forest Service needs to be there. The Karuk is involved in tagging but not really in a coordinated effort. The Tribe is currently not allowed to fish at Ishi Pishi Falls. The Karuk fishery is the only Tribal fishery that relies on fish above the confluence of the Trinity River. The Tribe is tremendously impacted by those dams. Ron sees this as a perfect time to integrate traditional knowledge and western science in restoration because conventional knowledge is not doing it. There needs to be a Subasin, to subasin coordinated effort to get resource back up. Susan Corum: The water quality program is very important for the Karuk Tribe. Susan believes the Tribes can provide long-term data sets that agencies cannot due to funding fluctuations and agency turn over. The Karuk Tribe in involved in a nutrient study for the dams which was deemed so important for monitoring the blue-green algae that the study was kept going again this year. The Yurok Tribe has set up real time health of river monitoring. A lot of the data that the Karuk are collecting is being used for fish monitoring. Susan did not know what ate the worm but thought that introduction of a species that eats the worm would not be the right way to go about fighting the disease problem on the Klamath.
An Assessment of Salmon Needs in the Basin
Disaster funding for the Klamath is coming up for a vote on the 9th of August but language needs to be included that will specify where the money will go. Some state money for the Klamath was already passed this year. Zeke would like a list of needs from the different agencies and Tribes to create a one page narrative outlining the overall needs of the basin. Connie Stewart suggested that a disease package be made that would prioritize and categorize activities and give a timeline for when these activities should take place, a product that legislators can grasp and support. Troy Fletcher said that monitoring activities need to be prioritized and then their priority needs to be categorized to high, medium, low.
Fish Health- disease studies Monitoring Instream Flow Sub basin flows
Below is a list of priorities for the Klamath Basin that Bill Kier wrote on the board:
• Fix unintended zeroing of Thompson Tideland Oil statewide fish habitat restoration program. • get some sideboards on the unspecified $9.5 million CDFG Klamath FY 2006-07 • Get Fed Appropriations for elements of the Klamath Fish Health “Concept Paper” • Get Fed appropriations for additional real-time monitoring stations for Klamath • Upper Basin creel census • State and Federal frozen positions Date for Future Meeting
The next meeting will be decided by email and tentatively set for a Thursday. It was agreed the group should meet in the next couple of months and that representatives from the BOR, EPA and USFS needed to be in attendance.
1630 – Adjourned
Respectfully submitted, Crescent Calimpong
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