Monday, April 16, 2007

Department of Ecology Issues 401 Permit for Dam Removals on Elwha River

In March, the Washington Department of Ecology issued a section 401 permit, marking an important milestone in the plan to removal two dams on the Elwha River in northwest Washington.
OLYMPIA - The Elwha River Restoration project in Clallam County, considered by many to be the most important salmon recovery project in the state, has received an important nod of approval with the Washington Department of Ecology issuing a major decision supporting the project.

Two major dams, the Elwha and Glines Canyon, will be removed, opening up over 70 miles of river habitat to endangered salmon and trout species.

Ecology's Shorelands and Environmental Assistance Program issued the critical Section 401 Water Quality certification, which is a federal Clean Water Act permit, certifying the dam removal and ecosystem restoration project will meet state water quality standards and other water protection regulations.


Sediment Build Up Behind the Snake River Dams

Erik Robinson of The Columbian has a major article on the problems of sedimentation behind the Snake River dams, the next front in the battle about breaching these dams. Well worth reading.

The US Army Corps of Engineers is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement and a Programmatic Sediment Management Plan to address the issue.