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July 2013 -- The Water Issue

Water is the hottest topic!

Your Share
The E-newsletter of EarthShare Oregon July 2013


July 2013: The Water Issue

In this issue:
The Freshwater Trust has an unusual quest - to pay to put water back into our rivers.

Klamath basin and wildlife suffering a man-made drought

Success in preventing sprawl along the Wild and Scenic White Salmon River!

10 things you can do to protect our coast

What did Oregon legislators do to protect our environment this session?

Photo: Jesse Laney

It's a great time to get outside and do good at the same time!  Get your hands dirty with these volunteer opportunities:

The Nature Conservancy needs helpers throughout the state at its nature preserves!

Camp in the Steens Mountains and pull obsolete fences with ONDA (Aug. 27-Sept.1st).

Use our Volunteer Matters 360 online tool to find your perfect volunteer opportunity.

Take Action!
At the Oxbow Springs by Bark
Stop destructive mining in our Oregon rivers.

What's happening regarding Gorge spring water bottling? Take action to protect our clean, natural water!

Protect our pollinators! You can save our state's bees by taking a pesticide-free pledge.

Can you think of anything more important to daily life on this planet than water?  Okay, air is pretty important, but that's a different newsletter.

Water is one of the most difficult resource issues facing the Pacific Northwest.  How much is there? Who gets to use it (or sell it)? Where is it stored or running free? How clean is it when we and our wildlife use it?

Below are some of the most timely efforts EarthShare Oregon nonprofits are taking on to protect your water -- what comes out of your faucet, as well as what's in our rivers.

The Freshwater Trust has an unusual quest - to pay to put water back into our streams and rivers.
La Grande Water DealThe flow department of The Freshwater Trust recently signed a 20-year reservoir lease with the City of La Grande on Beaver Creek, tributary of the Upper Grande Ronde River. This long-term lease will restore up to 5 cfs (55 million gallons!) of flow every year for 20 years to benefit spring Chinook and steelhead, as well as provide a buffer to high temperatures that regularly occur in the Upper Grande Ronde River. Read more about the deal in the La Grande Observer.

Klamath basin suffering through a man-made drought
You may have heard the Klamath Basin, along with much of southern Oregon, is facing a drought. But you probably haven’t heard the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the Obama administration have cut off water to the critically-important National Wildlife Refuges of the Klamath Basin, and to the fish and wildlife they sustain.

The photos included here were taken at Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge by Wendell Wood at the end of April, and even then, at the height of spring, the marshes were bone dry – many weeks ago!

The native birds and fish of the Klamath Basin are one “interest group” left most vulnerable by the ongoing wheeling and dealing of the region’s water politics. Read where things stand for our wildlife in a July 7th Oregonian article...

Success in preventing sprawl along the Wild & Scenic White Salmon River

The Wild and Scenic White Salmon River (Photo: Rick Till)

Less than one year after the Condit Dam was removed from the famous White Salmon River, another big victory has been scored for the river, citizens, and fish, blocking unchecked residential sprawl along the river and its tributaries that could have imperiled returning salmon and their key habitat.

On May 27, the Clark County Superior Court
ruled that Klickitat County violated the Washington Constitution as well as state environmental laws when it enacted a broad-scale rezoning that would have allowed residential sprawl on more than one thousand acres of land along the federally designated Wild and Scenic White Salmon River. The Court found that the County failed to follow a state law requiring involvement of the public in planning and to consider the impacts of new development on farmland, fish and wildlife habitat, water supplies, and the White Salmon River.

Friends of the Columbia Gorge and Friends of the White Salmon River challenged the County's zoning plans, which would have allowed hundreds of new water wells and septic systems, threatening water supplies with depletion and pollution.

The Court's decision will help protect salmon and the river's incredible recovery process since the removal of Condit Dam.

10 Things You Can do to Protect the Oregon Coast!

(Click the graphic to enlarge.)  Oregonians love a good beach cleanup, but let's prevent pollution, shall we?  The Ocean Conservancy's graphic gives you 10 easy ways to can protect our beaches and coastal waters BEFORE trash lands in the water!  Share it with your friends and see how much good we can do!

What did our Oregon State legislators do for the environment this session?

EarthShare Oregon's new member, Oregon League of Conservation Voters Education Fund, keeps the closest watch on what's happened in Salem.  The session ended Monday, July 8th, and OLCVEF immediately published its "SalemWatch" newsletter update on bills (both good and bad for the environment) that passed this session.  Sign up for "SalemWatch" future issues, or ask us to forward you the members-only update!

EarthShare Oregon
PO Box 40333
Portland, Oregon 97240
Tel: 503.223.9015


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