For nearly a decade, conservationists and irrigation interests have battled at the state capitol over Columbia River water and the long-standing laws safeguarding Columbia summer flows from new appropriations. These summer flows are critical to support the Columbia River’s salmon and steelhead runs protected by the federal Endangered Species Act… Download full newsletter and read … Read more
Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber and groups from Washington and Oregon working together under the banner of the Columbia River Umatilla Solutions task force put their signatures Friday to an agreement that outlines specific strategies for water use in eastern Oregon…
Governor Kitzhaber joined with members of the Columbia River Umatilla Solutions Taskforce to sign Friday a Declaration of Cooperation on Columbia River-Umatilla Basin water projects. The Declaration outlines specific strategies for storing water for expanded agricultural use, increased economic activity in Eastern Oregon, and improved in-stream conditions for fish…
PORTLAND — The latest effort to develop new irrigation water for Umatilla Basin farmers could provide a breakthrough in what has been a long-standing stalemate between farmers, environmentalists and other fish interests. At a symposium on Columbia River water at the Northwest Agricultural Show Jan. 29, Craig Reeder, a Umatilla Basin farmer, said a broad … Read more
HERMISTON, Ore. — With its sandy soils and arid climate, Eastern Oregon’s Umatilla Basin boasts some of the most productive farmland in the world. From potatoes to onions, corn to peas, watermelons to blueberries, the region is an oasis of high-value crop production. Just add water, and crops flourish here. Water, however, is hard to … Read more
PORTLAND, Ore. –- The lack of water for both farmers and fish is a problem that’s plagued the arid West for years. Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber wants to try a possible solution in the Umatilla Basin, where water would be withdrawn from the Columbia River during the winter and store it underground so it’s there … Read more
BUTTER CREEK — The crick, as it’s called, tumbles out of the Blue Mountains, carrying snowmelt and spring rain to the Umatilla River. Water is scarce here, eight to 12 inches of precipitation annually on the flats, but Butter Creek grows enough in its 57 mile run to become a rushing stream for a couple … Read more
ov. John Kitzhaber has asked stakeholders in the Umatilla Basin to hammer out a plan to combat water shortages in the region, with preliminary findings due by December. The group is working through the Oregon Solutions process at Portland State University…
At first blush, it would appear the Columbia River-Umatilla Solutions Task Force’s odds of succeeding are slim and none —?and slim is headed for the door.
The Columbia Basin is likely to become a greener place — agriculturally, economically and environmentally — if the new Columbia River-Umatilla Solutions Task Force’s vision becomes reality.