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NOAA Fisheries Opens Hood River Habitat to Migrating Fish

For the first time in more than 100 years, migrating fish have access to 120 miles of habitat in the Hood River basin—a tributary of the Columbia River in central Oregon—thanks to the removal of the Powerdale Dam.

NOAA Fisheries' Northwest Regional staff worked with federal and state agencies, a Native American tribe, non-government organizations, the dam owner PacifiCorp to open passage for Chinook and Coho salmon, steelhead, Pacific lamprey, sea-run cutthroat trout, and endangered bull trout.

On the heels of the settlement to remove Marmot Dam as part of a decommissioning a project on the Sandy River in Oregon, NOAA Fisheries' Hydropower Coordinator, Keith Kirkendall, urged PacifiCorp to enter settlement negotiations with dam removal as the cornerstone of the agreement. An agreement was signed in 2003 requiring dam removal by 2012 and specified conservation measures during interim operations. Dam removal began in April 2010 with NOAA fish passage engineer, Melissa Jundt, advising PacifiCorp how to avoid harm to fish throughout the process.

Powerdale Before
Powerdale Before

 

Powerdale After
Powerdale After