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NOAA Fisheries Recommends $106.1 Million In NOAA Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Funding To Protect And Restore West Coast Salmon And Steelhead

Funding for 16 programs and projects will support conservation efforts in California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Alaska.

To support West Coast salmon and steelhead populations, NOAA Fisheries is recommending $106.1 million in funding for 16 new and continuing programs and projects through our Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund grant program. NOAA Fisheries distributes funds to states and tribes through this competitive grant program. Eligible projects include all phases of habitat restoration and protection activities to recover Pacific salmon listed under the Endangered Species Act or support Pacific salmon and steelhead species important to tribal treaty and trust fishing rights and native subsistence fishing. Since the program’s inception in 2000, the grant program has provided more than $1.7 billion to implement more than 15,000 salmon recovery projects. Our partners have protected, restored, and created nearly 1.2 million acres of salmon habitat and have made over 11,800 stream miles accessible to salmon and steelhead.

“This targeted funding could not come at a more crucial time,” said Jennifer Quan, Regional Administrator in NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region. “With climate change exerting increasing impacts, we are proud to partner with states, tribes and communities to reopen and restore the habitat that affords salmon the resilience they need to survive and thrive. We will work together to make the most of these dollars to do the most good for salmon.”

In fiscal year 2023, we are recommending $64.2 million in annual appropriation funding, including $34.4 million under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and $7.5 million under the Inflation Reduction Act, for 16 new and on-going salmon recovery programs and projects. Recipients include the states of Alaska, Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and California and federally recognized tribes of the Columbia River and Pacific Coast (including Alaska) or their representative tribal commission or consortia. The amount of each recommended award is in parentheses at the end of each paragraph.

“We’re very happy to be able to provide more funding to bolster salmon science and management in Alaska,” said NOAA Fisheries Alaska Regional Administrator Jon Kurland. “The additional recommended funding for our state and tribal partners is an important boost that will support sustainable salmon populations and Alaska Native subsistence fishing opportunities.”

Alaska

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s Alaska Sustainable Salmon Fund will support projects necessary to maintain healthy salmon populations as well as protect and restore their habitats. Projects funded include the protection of water quantity and quality, land conservation, fish passage improvements, removal of invasive species, instream restoration, and monitoring of salmon populations utilized for native subsistence fishing. ($6,800,000)

The Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim Consortia which consists of the Association of Village Council Presidents, Tanana Chiefs Conference, and Kawerak, Inc., will support salmon populations within the resource dependent region through the Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim Tribal Research and Restoration Program. Information from high-priority monitoring and applied research projects will contribute to an improved understanding by management agencies of the complex relationships between salmon and their freshwater, nearshore, and marine environments; and improved management and recovery of declined salmon populations to better provide sustainable harvest opportunities for subsistence uses. ($2,000,000)

The Qawalangin Tribe of Unalaska will monitor sockeye and pink salmon escapement before contamination removal and research methods to remove solid waste from Unalaska Lake and Iliuliuk Creek. The Qawalangin Tribe of Unalaska is a new grant recipient. ($1,382,053)Washington

Washington’s Salmon Recovery Funding Board through the Washington Recreation and Conservation Office will continue its efforts to recover federally listed salmon statewide and support the exercise of treaty fishing rights by addressing the state’s highest salmon recovery needs. RCO anticipates funding up to 110 discrete habitat projects with PCSRF and non-federal match funding. In addition to habitat restoration projects, RCO will also fund and support the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Northwest Fisheries Indian Commission hatchery reform efforts, which are a crucial component to salmon recovery and supporting the exercises of tribal treaty fishing rights. Finally, biologists will conduct status and trends monitoring, validation monitoring, and statewide project effectiveness monitoring to track progress and fish response at a watershed scale. ($25,500,000)

The Northwest Fisheries Indian Commission, as a support organization to 20 Puget Sound and Washington coastal treaty tribes, will administer sub-awards to tribes. The sub-awards will address factors limiting the viability of ESA-listed salmon and steelhead; restore and protect habitats; conduct essential monitoring; and conduct projects that will help fulfill tribal treaty fishing rights and advance the recovery and conservation of salmon and steelhead. ($6,300,000)

The Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation will study salmon reintroduction upstream of Chief Joseph and Grand Coulee Dams in the Upper Columbia Basin. The objectives include supporting the overall effort to implement Phase 2 feasibility evaluations of trapping and transporting adult salmon to the blocked area of the Upper Columbia Basin and restoring native subsistence fishing in an area deprived of salmon for more than 80 years. ($620,659)

The Cowlitz Indian Tribe will address limiting factors for Lower Columbia fall Chinook (threatened), Columbia River chum (threatened), Lower Columbia coho salmon (threatened) and winter steelhead by providing fish passage to Cabin and Johnson Creeks, within the Grays River watershed. The recovery plan identifies the Grays River subbasin as one of the most promising areas for salmon recovery among Washington coastal subbasins. The Cowlitz Indian Tribe will also increase their Natural Resource Department capacity to engage in regional salmon and steelhead recovery planning and coordination and project development and implementation. ($3,609,081)

Idaho

The Idaho Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Program administered by the Idaho Governor’s Office of Species Conservation will fund projects that are compatible with the Columbia Basin Collaborative sustainability goals including enhancing the availability and quality of salmon habitats, improve management practices, and address major habitat limiting factors. The vision for the Idaho Program is to have delisted Snake River salmon and steelhead stocks that indicate clean and abundant water, reliable and clean energy, a robust economy, and vibrant cultural and spiritual traditions—all of which exist within sustainable ecosystems. ($9,000,000)

The Coeur d’Alene Tribe will gather baseline data to inform the full-scale feasibility of salmon reintroductions upstream of Chief Joseph and Grand Coulee dams by studying the downstream movement and survival of juvenile Chinook salmon. ($575,000)

The Shoshone Bannock Tribes will implement two projects:

  • The Cultural and Subsistence Fishery Monitoring and Management Program will use PCSRF funds to participate in fishery forecasting and in-season management of tribal fisheries on Snake River spring/summer Chinook salmon.
  • The Shoshone Bannock Tribe will restore and enhance Panther Creek, a tributary of the Salmon River, by addressing limiting factors for Snake River spring/summer Chinook salmon. ($440,793)

Oregon

The Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board will fund projects that help achieve salmon recovery goals across Oregon by distributing funding to high-priority salmon recovery actions. The board will also provide funding to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to support several salmon recovery programs that are integral to the Oregon Plan and that align with the PCSRF program goals. ($20,200,000)

The Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, as a support organization to the four Columbia River treaty tribes, will administer sub-awards to its member tribes based on high-priority needs for salmon in tribal ceded areas. Funded projects include all aspects of salmon recovery including planning and design, implementation, monitoring, and research. ($5,298,826)

The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians will restore 2.3 miles of habitat for threatened Oregon Coast coho salmon by replacing a failing culvert and in-stream and riparian habitat restoration in the West Fork of Canyon Creek, a tributary to the Umpqua River. This project will improve habitat complexity and passage on land administered by the Cow Creek Umpqua Tribe for salmon. ($2,269,259)

The Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians will implement Phase 4 of the Siletz River Restoration project constructing large wood structures on 1.5 miles of the lower Siletz River, the Tribe’s first efforts to install large wood structures in a tidal zone. The addition of large wood structures will promote habitat complexity that increases the availability and quality of habitat for Oregon Coast coho salmon. ($499,252)

California

The Fisheries Restoration Grant Program through the California Department of Fish and Wildlife will fund salmon and steelhead projects throughout California focused on large-scale, process-based habitat restoration projects that sustain natural ecosystem functions and processes. The objectives include the improvement of spawning success of adult salmon and steelhead, and increased the health and survival of all life stages of salmon and steelhead. ($18,600,000)

The Klamath River Inter-Tribal Fish and Water Commission, as a support organization to four federally recognized tribes in the Klamath Basin, will administer sub-awards to its member tribes to conduct habitat restoration activities, monitoring, and research. ($2,559,180)

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