RIVER RESTORATION SYMPOSIA - PRESENTATIONS PORTAL

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River Restoration Northwest brings you the 2020 Symposium presentations in a new searchable portal (Best viewed on a desktop screen).

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PresentationAbstractYearPresenter
Pre-Dam Removal Topographic Base-Line Data Collection on the Klamath River – Collaboration in Action

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: David (DJ) Bandrowski Symposium Session: 2020 – 11 Dam removal in the Pacific Northwest Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, fish passage, floodplain, hydraulics, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), riparian, risk, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTFour dams on the Klamath River are planned for removal in 2022 to restore volitional fish passage and salmonid habitat across more than 400 miles of river in the upper Klamath basin. During dam removal a substantial portion of the accumulated sediment will be released to the river downstream in a relatively short period of time. The release of reservoir sediment has the potential to impact downstream reaches in a variety of ways across a range of temporal and spatial scales. Sediment erosion, transport, and deposition provide the underlying physical framework for the responses of aquatic and riparian ecosystems to dam removal. Thus, pre-dam removal baseline survey of river bed bathymetry and near shore terrestrial topography are necessary to understand potential responses and impacts to flood hydraulics, geomorphic evolution, and sediment transport dynamics. System-wide topographic surveys will underpin a quantitative understanding of both the short and long term river response to dam removal. This data collection effort will also serve as the foundational dataset to be used in the future to quantify and compare physical change and sediment transport processes over time. During the summer of 2018 a multi-agency team collected this topographic data across the Klamath basin from the estuary to Iron Gate Dam. Phase I of the project was an Aerial Imagery and LiDAR (topo-bathy) survey flown in June of 2018 by Quantum Spatial Inc. (QSI) with funding support from USGS, NOAA, KRRC, and others. Phase II was a bathymetric boat-based hydrographic multi-beam sonar survey through a collaboration between the Yurok Tribe, Hewlett Foundation and US Army Corps of Engineers – Engineering Research and Development Center (ERDC). Currently the multiagency team is in the process of completing Phase III which is the post-processing of the entire data set into a fully integrated mosaic that will produce a seamless topographic Digital Terrain Model (DTM) of the entire Klamath River. Phase IV will be the development of a 2D-Hydrodynamic Model of the river’s existing flow conditions that will be implemented by the Bureau of Reclamation – Technical Service Center (TSC) – Sedimentation and River Hydraulics (SRH) Group. The final goal of the project is to have a foundational data set that management and the scientific community will utilize to better understand the effects of dam removal, measure geomorphic evolution, and help monitor the biological response of a newly free-flowing Klamath …

2020David (DJ) Bandrowski
Replacing Low Head Dams with Nature-like Fishways to Improve Fish Passage

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Matthew Prociv Symposium Session: 2020 – 11 Dam removal in the Pacific Northwest Topics covered: beavers, fish passage, hydraulics, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), stream, and urban ABSTRACTImpoundment structures, such as dams, are a reliable method to divert water from otherwise naturally flowing water courses to other locations and consumptive uses, but are also impediments or full barriers to fish passage and alter the natural habitat and hydraulic and sediment conveyance characteristics of the water courses. Several projects, currently in various stages of implementation, from in design to constructed and operating, are attempting to improve/restore fish passage by returning rivers to more nature-like channels while maintaining reliable water supplies. In this presentation we will examine the needs driving these projects, the physical improvements to the rivers, infrastructure, and affected environment, and the potential pitfalls involved in the replacement of impoundment structures with regraded, stabilized, nature-like channels while simultaneously maintaining or expanding water supply diversions. We will also explore the geomorphic and hydraulic characteristics that make impoundment structures good candidates for replacement with regraded channels; discuss how fish and lamprey run timing and biomechanics are incorporated into design of the regraded channels to make them successful; examine how natural hydraulic and sediment conveyance processes of the water course may be restored; and discuss management related considerations such as risk, uncertainty, maintenance, and …

2020Matthew Prociv
MF Nooksack River Dam Removal Planning: A Smart Infrastructure and Fish Passage Project

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: April McEwen Symposium Session: 2020 – 11 Dam removal in the Pacific Northwest Topics covered: beavers, fish passage, hydraulics, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), risk, and sediment transport ABSTRACTThe Middle Fork Nooksack River Fish Passage Project, near Bellingham, WA, will reestablish access to approximately 16 miles of critical spawning and rearing habitat for Puget Sound ESA-listed Chinook salmon, Steelhead, and Bull Trout in 2020 while maintaining the City of Bellingham’s supplemental water supply. Project elements include: (1) removal of the City of Bellingham’s diversion dam and channel restoration to restore fish passage; (2) relocating/constructing the water intake upstream to maintain municipal water supply; and (3) installing an off-channel fish screen for fish protection and reduced environmental impact footprint. The project design uses innovative engineering and modern technology to meet the purpose of the dam in providing the City of Bellingham’s supplemental water supply, without need for the dam. A geomorphic-based design approach based in thorough site assessment targets native fish species passage, and best addresses risk and inherent uncertainty associated with the Nooksack River system’s physical drivers and channel conditions in meeting the project goals and objectives. The $17 million project was re-initiated in 2017, with the entire planning phase (i.e., feasibility evaluation, alternatives analysis, design, permitting, and fundraising) completed in 1.5 years. This included final design plans for the following project elements: dam removal, restoration of ~200ft of river channel, construction of a gravity-fed water intake ~600ft upstream, extension of the existing water diversion pipeline through the historical dam construction spoils, and an automated off-channel fish screen and bypass facility. Thirteen federal, state, and local permits were secured, including an extended in-water work period for completion in one season. American Rivers secured significant seed funding from private foundations for project management, design, and construction ($4.1 million), which allowed the remaining $13.5 million to be leveraged from local, state, and federal sources. The project is currently in construction, and in-water work will begin in June 2020 with completion in October 2020. This project demonstrates best practices in efficient project planning and management, with the following primary conclusions and implications. Water resource needs can be met with less environmental impact for longer-term sustainability through use of smart modern infrastructure. A complex multi-benefit project can be planned and funded in record time through development of a strategic yet agile Project Management framework, application of efficient project management processes, and public-private funding …

2020April McEwen
Using stream restoration to complement conventional stormwater flow control BMPs

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Steve Thompson Symposium Session: 2020 – 10 Prioritizing restoration Topics covered: beavers, floodplain, hydraulics, permits, riparian, stormwater, and urban ABSTRACTThis talk presents the case for using stream restoration to achieve the same goals and objectives as conventional stormwater flow control BMPs (i.e. detention/infiltration/Low Impact Development) in certain locations in the watershed. This presentation begins by covering some of the background of stormwater flow control BMPs (flow control), the theory behind why we use them, and where they are most effective in the watershed. Flow control measures are very beneficial in the upper watershed, where they can reduce peak flows on small tributary streams and help recharge the aquifer. However, these same measures are less effective lower in the watershed. They are a good preventative tool to reduce the risk of downstream channel incision, but offer only limited benefit for alluvial channels that have already scoured down to bedrock or a hard armoring. Once the damage is done the need for prevention is diminished. Flow control requirements are governed by a one-size-fits-all policy, which strives to recover impaired rivers and streams by creating a more natural hydrologic flow regime. The limitation to flow control is that it only considers impacts from impervious surfaces, neglects all other direct human modifications to the stream channels, and assumes that channel restoration can be achieved through better stormwater infiltration. Changes in flow regimes, such as increased peak flows resulting from urbanization, can have significant impacts, but clearing of in-stream wood and riparian vegetation, hardening of banks and loss of floodplain can have even more severe impacts. All of these alterations can lead to channel incision and can exaggerate changes in flow regime. Channel incision also leads to a loss of in-stream alluvium which in turn reduces hyporheic flow quantities which lowers water tables and worsens water quality. We must consider all of these factors if our goal is to restore natural stream functions. This presentation offers examples of how to use stream restoration to meet the same goals and objectives as stormwater flow control requirements. For example, restoring floodplain connectivity and floodplain storage instead of building artificial ponds to store floodwater. We will discuss the regulatory framework that must be followed. We will also make a case for out-of-kind stream restoration in lieu of conventional flow control. In some locations correcting fish passage barriers, restoring riparian buffers and floodplains, and adding in-stream wood in strategic locations can offer much greater environmental benefits than building stormwater ponds or underground detention …

2020Steve Thompson
Data-Driven Decision Making: An Innovative Prioritization Tool for Restoration (and more!)

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Robyn Pepin Symposium Session: 2020 – 10 Prioritizing restoration Topics covered: beavers, fish passage, floodplain, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), modeling, riparian, and risk ABSTRACTThe Upper Columbia has over 2,000 miles (3,200 km) of salmon, steelhead, and bull trout habitat, a substantial portion of which is inaccessible to fish due to anthropogenic barriers. Since 1999, partners working in the region have addressed over 135 high priority fish passage barriers. As the list of barriers to address began to shrink, the region now faced the challenge of prioritizing the removal or replacement of the remaining smaller barriers. After a comprehensive assessment of hundreds of new potential fish passage barriers in the Wenatchee subbasin in 2016-2017, the Upper Columbia Salmon Recovery Board and its partners completed a GIS-based prioritization of barriers using species, habitat, and barrier metrics. This talk will include a description of the strategy that was developed and adopted to prioritize fish passage projects in the Upper Columbia and a discussion of the collaboration and technical review efforts to produce a reliable prioritization tool. An ArcGIS model was used as a tool which used spatial analysis in a reliable, repeatable fashion – as input datasets improve and barrier projects are completed, the prioritization can be repeated to give stakeholders the most up-to-date information. Using this tool, the region now has a common language and an apples-to-apples comparison of ecological conditions surrounding each barrier to inform project and funding decisions. Additionally, this talk will address how the concepts behind the barrier prioritization are currently being adapted to prioritize HUC12 watersheds within the Upper Columbia region, as well as individual stream reach segments, for funding opportunities and project …

2020Robyn Pepin
Tucannon River Geomorphic Analysis and Restoration Prioritization – Take II

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Tracy Drury Symposium Session: 2020 – 10 Prioritizing restoration Topics covered: beavers, fish passage, fish-salmon, floodplain, hydraulics, lessons learned, modeling, and sediment transport ABSTRACTThe Tucannon River was identified as a priority watershed in the 2008 BiOp and determined to be critical to recovery of Snake River Spring Chinook. Geomorphic analysis and restoration prioritization was conducted in 2010 and more than 12 million dollars has been spent implementing restoration projects based on that prioritization effort. Given the large investment over the past decade, extensive additional data available, and continued restoration effort, a more in-depth, data driven, analysis and prioritization was desired by project proponents. A part of the newly available data was fish presence and use within the watershed that was previously mostly unknown. In addition, we developed a 2-D model for 50 miles of the watershed and conducted various hydraulic and physical process analyses using green LiDAR collected in 2017. We also conducted a physical change analysis comparing the 2017 green LiDAR to red LiDAR collected in 2010. Key components of the geomorphic analysis and restoration prioritization were floodplain connectivity analysis, channel complexity analysis, and excess transport capacity analysis. Connectivity analysis looked at the potential floodplain available for connection to floodwaters during a 5-year recurrence flow or lower. These potential floodplain areas were compared to current 2-year recurrence floodplain areas and the ability to extend them to the 5-year extent by removing blocking features such as levees, or placing log structures to retain mobile sediments and raise the river bed elevation. Complexity analysis utilized a complexity index based initially on the River Complexity Index (RCI) that added in a parameter to better capture the size, or perimeter of an island feature to better value channel margins critical for juvenile salmonids. Excess transport capacity was evaluated to help identify high energy areas to treat in order to help promote temporary storage of sediment and identify potential locations for gravel augmentation. The prioritization is a data driven analysis that is largely comprised of the connectivity and complexity analyses with the excess transport capacity being more of an indicator and differentiator among closely rated river segments. Excess transport capacity was also used to help develop the basin scale gravel augmentation plan and identify key locations for gravel reintroduction to help “jump start” natural processes and minimize the timeline to reaching restoration potential within a given project site. Project sites are easily compared and key elements necessary of realizing restoration potential are documented and easily retrievable for all sites. The end product from this effort in not a list, but a tool that can be constantly updated as projects are completed and more information becomes available. This method presents a new look at how to use widely available information to help maximize the use of our limited restoration dollars as salmonid stocks continue to dwindle and competition for funding continues to …

2020Tracy Drury
Planning for Recovery – Filling the Salmonid Rearing Habitat Deficit on the Lower American River, Ca

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Nick Southall Symposium Session: 2020 – 10 Prioritizing restoration Topics covered: beavers, fish passage, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, floodplain, hydraulics, lessons learned, modeling, and riparian ABSTRACTToday’s salmon runs in California’s Central Valley have decreased to a small fraction of their historic abundance (Yoshiyama, 1998). Salmonid populations have suffered due to the impacts of the 1849 California gold rush, subsequent settlement and agricultural development, overfishing, and the damming of nearly all Central Valley rivers. Rim dams on the major tributaries have substantially limited the extents of anadromy, regulated flows, and interrupted natural downstream processes. As part of the Central Valley Project, Folsom and Nimbus Dams were constructed in 1955 on the American River, limiting anadromy to the lower 23 miles of the American River. Over the last 12 years, salmonid recovery efforts on the lower American River have focused on gravel augmentation efforts to improve spawning conditions. Following the completion of nine successful projects, the focus has evolved to include the enhancement and creation of rearing habitat. A key question for decision makers is how much rearing habitat is needed and where should it be located? This presentation will provide an overview of a rigorous science-based planning effort to quantitatively identify and prioritize potential rearing habitat enhancement projects. Using the USFWS Anadromous Fish Restoration Program’s doubling goal for Chinook salmon on the lower American River, the overall spatial and temporal need for rearing habitat was estimated with the Emigrating Salmonid Habitat Estimator (ESHE) Model. Results from a detailed two-dimensional hydrodynamic model were combined with habitat suitability indices to estimate the spatial distribution of existing rearing habitat across a wide range of flows. The rearing habitat deficit was calculated as the difference between the habitat required to reach the doubling goal and the habitat currently available, which varies both spatially and temporally. A high-resolution digital elevation model of the river corridor and results of the hydrodynamic model were combined to calculate the relative elevation of floodplain areas above typical rearing season flows. Findings of this assessment were used to identify potential floodplain enhancement (lowering), side channel connection, backwater channel enhancement, and structural improvement (large wood and revegetation) opportunities. Initial prioritization employed the methods described above and identified over 60 opportunities ranging in scale and type. Using various cost/benefit criteria, sites were ranked and the leading opportunities reviewed with stakeholders. The leading sites were subsequently refined and reprioritized through evaluation of grading boundaries, minimization of impacts to existing vegetation, optimization of rearing conditions for juvenile salmonids and evaluation of additional factors including the thermal regime, the quality of existing rearing habitat, and recent geomorphic evolution. In future phases of the project, the highest ranked sites will be advanced for further design, permitting and implementation. The innovative application of the ESHE model, multi-dimensional hydrodynamic modeling, rearing habitat quantification and the relative elevation analysis, provides a quantifiable science-based approach to identify and prioritize a variety of rearing habitat restoration opportunities aimed to address limiting factors necessary to recover declining salmon stocks. Ronald M. Yoshiyama, Frank W. Fisher & Peter B. Moyle (1998) Historical Abundance and Decline of Chinook Salmon in the Central Valley Region of California, NAJFM, 18:3, …

2020Nick Southall
From Source Assessment to Implementation Success – Water Cleanup Planning and the East Fork Lewis Ri

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Jennifer Riedmayer Symposium Session: 2020 – 09 A watershed in transition: Salmon recovery in the East Fork Lewis River Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, floodplain, lessons learned, monitoring, riparian, risk, stormwater, and stream ABSTRACTThe East Fork Lewis River and its tributaries are listed on the state’s polluted waters list (303d list) for warm water temperatures and fecal coliform bacteria problems. Keeping the watershed clean is important because high levels of bacteria increase risks to people swimming, wading, or fishing. Also, high temperatures create poor conditions for fish and other wildlife. The Washington State Department of Ecology’s Water Quality Program has been a key partner in the EFLR watershed since 2005, when Ecology prioritized the watershed for the development of a TMDL Alternative (Water Cleanup Plan). In 2018, the East Fork Lewis River Watershed Bacteria and Temperature Source Assessment was published to support water cleanup planning and implementation. This is the first Source Assessment completed by Ecology in Southwest Washington to analyze water quality data, identify critical areas, and develop general recommendations to improve water quality. Priority areas for bacteria and temperature improvement are located in the middle and lower sections of the watershed. All mainstem sites sampled in the East Fork Lewis River did not meet temperature water quality standards. Shade deficits over 40% are located in the middle watershed between river miles 9 to 13. Priority areas to address bacteria are tributaries in the lower watershed. To meet bacteria standards in the lower tributaries, bacteria reductions of 81-96% are needed. To implement recommendations from the Source Assessment, the East Fork Lewis River Partnership was launched in May 2018 to work collaboratively with local, state, federal, and tribal governments, non-profits, watershed groups, and private landowners to develop and implement a Water Cleanup Plan. Since the partnership was launched, over 50 different partners from 30 different organizations have engaged in East Fork Lewis River Partnership activities. The success of water cleanup plans relies on establishing, maintaining, and leveraging partnerships, and increasing public awareness as principal tools to achieve improved water quality. Currently, multiple new projects and programs are being developed in the watershed. All of these programs are voluntary, and help achieve water quality and salmon recovery goals, while reducing threats identified in the recent LCFRB East Fork Lewis River Recovery Plan Review. Priorities for long-term implementation include addressing threats from septic systems, stormwater, and agriculture, and enhancing riparian forest restoration efforts in the watershed. This presentations highlights: How Ecology developed a Source Assessment and Water Cleanup Plan for the East Fork Lewis River watershed. How a shade deficit analysis was completed to identify priority locations for future riparian restoration efforts. Past restoration and acquisition successes in the watershed will also be highlighted. New efforts to reduce bacteria in the watershed which include proactive nonpoint source investigation, manure lagoon decommissioning, stormwater management activities, and the development of a new pollution identification and correction program to address failing septic systems and agricultural challenges in the watershed. This session will end with recommended next steps to achieve water quality and salmon recovery goals in the East Fork Lewis River …

2020Jennifer Riedmayer
Assessing recovery partner implementation of Lower Columbia recovery plan programs: an EF Lewis Rive

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Katie Blauvelt Symposium Session: 2020 – 09 A watershed in transition: Salmon recovery in the East Fork Lewis River Topics covered: beavers, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, lessons learned, modeling, riparian, sediment transport, stream, and urban ABSTRACTThe Washington Lower Columbia Salmon Recovery and Fish & Wildlife Subbasin Plan was the first locally-driven salmon recovery plan on the West Coast. Among a wealth of essential recovery information, the plan identifies actions designed to address threats that had taken southwest Washington salmonid populations to the brink of extinction. Voluntary in nature, the plan relies on partner programs at various levels of federal, tribal, state, local, and non-profit entities to implement the actions and achieve key biological objectives. Fifteen years have passed since the recovery plan was first developed. Throughout the past 15 years, have partner programs met the expectations of the recovery plan? How central is the recovery plan to partner program operations? How do we measure the implementation of qualitative recovery plan actions? To help answer these questions, the Lower Columbia Fish Recovery Board commissioned a pilot study in the East Fork Lewis River subbasin to evaluate implementation of the habitat-portion of the recovery plan. PC Trask and Associates conducted the review in 2018-2019, which involved conversations with over 60 different staff from recovery partner programs, the collection and synthesis of numerous geospatial datasets to help characterize a landscape perspective of program implementation, and research on over 27 different habitat protection and restoration program processes. The final report depicts a unique story about a subbasin under immense pressures (population growth, development, and resource extraction) matched with immense recovery plan expectations (bringing five salmonid populations from very low or medium viability to very high or high viability). Several key datasets provide a bases to evaluate how partner program activities have manifested on the ground by assessing temporal trends in forest cover and harvest activity, rural and urban development, impervious surfaces, and restoration and conservation actions. Additionally, subsetting these analyses to key habitat protection areas, like Critical Areas, Shorelines, and priority subwatersheds, provides important context about assumptions fundamental to the success of the recovery plan. Given the intensity of threats, the East Fork Lewis River subbasin proved to be an ideal test-case to evaluate how well the mechanisms between the recovery plan and partner programs are functioning. Themes from interviews and data analyses were translated into key findings about habitat-related recovery plan implementation strengths, weaknesses, and gaps. The first of its kind, this pilot study provides a unique perspective by evaluating how partner programs operate independently, how they relate to one another, and how well they collectively translate into recovery plan implementation. Identifying strengths and weaknesses of the recovery plan’s fundamental mechanisms is an important step in adaptive management. This study is a step forward in reconciling recovery plan expectations with on-the-ground program …

2020Katie Blauvelt
Adaptively Managing the WA Lower Columbia River Recovery Plan: Linking Salmon and Landscape-Scale Th

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Amelia Johnson Symposium Session: 2020 – 09 A watershed in transition: Salmon recovery in the East Fork Lewis River Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, floodplain, lessons learned, monitoring, and risk ABSTRACTSalmon and steelhead recovery in the Lower Columbia River region relies on threat reductions and viability improvements to support Endangered Species Act (ESA) delisting and the long-term goal of establishing healthy and harvestable populations. To support these efforts, the Lower Columbia Fish Recovery Board (LCFRB) led the development of the Washington Lower Columbia Salmon Recovery and Fish & Wildlife Subbasin Plan (Washington Recovery Plan), which identifies ESA delisting viability targets for each population as well as 364 recovery actions across seven “all-H” threat categories to salmon and steelhead: stream habitat, estuarine habitat, ocean and climate conditions, hatcheries, harvest, hydropower, and ecological interactions. A 25-year planning horizon beginning with initial ESA listings (1998 – 1999) was identified in the Washington Recovery Plan for action implementation, although it is expected that threat reduction and fish responses will take much longer. Implementation of actions is voluntary, and may not occur or change over time as funding, new information, or other challenges and successes occur. Recovery partners are associated with individual actions, emphasizing the highly collaborative and grassroots level implementation necessary to achieve recovery. Twenty years since the initial ESA listings, the LCFRB is reaching out to recovery partners to better understand action implementation and to assess viability progress at population and species-scales. This information is essential for determining 1.) if recovery actions are being implemented within the 25-year planning horizon identified in the Washington Recovery Plan, 2.) if action implementation is leading to expected threat reductions, and 3.) if salmon and steelhead are responding as expected. Preliminarily, LCFRB and its partners are finding that action implementation is occurring, although many efforts are still ongoing without sufficient monitoring to determine success. For instance, the majority of hatchery and harvest recovery actions have been or are actively being implemented. However, monitoring of these actions, and any necessary management adjustments, are still in progress. With regard to salmon viability, estimates of natural original returns for Chinook and coho populations are too limited to assess long-term trends relative to delisting targets. In contrast, steelhead are doing well from an abundance perspective when 12-year median return estimates are compared to delisting targets. With the exception of three populations, chum salmon are struggling with very low returns for the majority of populations. Although these efforts span the full region, a story is also emerging specific to the East Fork Lewis River watershed, which supports five high priority salmon and steelhead populations for recovery. Today, the LCFRB will share 1.) how region-wide Washington Recovery Plan reporting efforts are being linked to more local watershed planning and monitoring efforts in the East Fork Lewis River watershed and 2.) how local watershed efforts can in turn inform regional recovery implementation. This type of collaborative assessment is essential to adaptively managing the Washington Recovery Plan by providing support for more efficient and effective threat reduction efforts and, ultimately, salmon and steelhead …

2020Amelia Johnson
Modernizing the Columbia River Treaty – Opportunities and Challenges

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Kathy Eichenberger Symposium Session: 2020 – Invited Speaker Topics covered: beavers, Canada, climate change, community involvement, and permits ABSTRACTThe Columbia River Treaty was ratified in 1964 and has been implemented collaboratively by the U.S. and Canada for over 50 years, much of the time under the radar. The Treaty has been very successful in meeting its two prime objectives: preventing damaging floods and enhancing power generation. However much has changed since the 60’s: different social values and interests, an evolving policy and legal landscape, advances in science, transformational technologies, a changing climate and many more voices clamoring to be heard. It was therefore very timely for both countries to review the benefits and impacts of the Treaty and assess its future: should it be terminated, continued or changed? To answer this question, separate comprehensive stakeholder engagement processes were held in 2012-2013 on each side of the border, resulting in recommendations to the respective governments on the future of the Treaty. What were the key interests, what did the respective recommendations cover, and is there alignment between them to be found? How will ecosystems feature in a renewed Treaty and what role will First Nations and tribes play? Formal binational negotiations began in May 2018. As these talks continue, both countries need to reflect on why the Columbia River Treaty is important today and in decades to come, and what are the challenges and opportunities facing Canada and the U.S. as we negotiate a modernized Treaty that is resilient and will serve future …

2020Kathy Eichenberger
Incentivizing Channel Migration: Channel Migration Zone Easements along the Yellowstone River

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Wendy Weaver Symposium Session: 2020 – 08 Pre-Disaster: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure Topics covered: beavers, climate change, community involvement, floodplain, outside PNW, permits, riparian, risk, and stream ABSTRACTThe expansion of bank armor on the Yellowstone River in Montana has resulted in a reduction in floodplain turnover rates of about 180 acres per year since the 1970s. As a result, the cottonwood forests for which the river corridor is known are aging with dampened rates of forest regeneration associated with channel migration and disturbance. In order to better understand rates and patterns of channel movement on the Yellowstone, Channel Migration Zone (CMZ) maps generated over a decade ago have been extensively used for education, outreach and planning, as the maps are non-regulatory. Recent applications of the maps include the development of a Channel Migration Easement (CME) corridor which prioritizes areas based on rates of channel movement, riparian habitats, cottonwood recruitment potential and flood storage. These footprints have been used to prioritize properties for easements, deed restrictions, and/or acquisition in support of general project development, compensatory mitigation, and in support of a Natural Resource Damage Program settlement following an oil spill on the river. Over the past several years the non-profit organization that operates the in-lieu fee mitigation program for the State of Montana, Montana Aquatic Resources Services (MARS) has implemented channel migration easements and tracked intensive landowner interest for future projects. These easements preclude bank armoring in a defined floodplain area, and may include broader conservation easement footprints that extend beyond the CMZ. This allows ground identified as part of the active river corridor to remain unarmored in perpetuity. Challenges with the CME program include securing easement holders in these non-traditional settings, identifying funding sources and identifying appropriate market values for …

2020Wendy Weaver
Fluvial Hazard Mapping in Colorado

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Katie Jagt Symposium Session: 2020 – 08 Pre-Disaster: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, lessons learned, outside PNW, risk, and urban ABSTRACTIn order to recognize and assess the hazards associated with erosion, sediment deposition and other dynamic river processes, the Colorado Water Conservation Board has developed a program to identify and map fluvial hazards to help communities better understand all hazards associated with flood events. The State of Colorado’s Fluvial Hazard Zone (FHZ) mapping program represents a significant and necessary step forward in stream corridor management, flood and wildfire mitigation and preparedness and conservation practices. This presentation will discuss the Colorado FHZ Program establishment and evolution as well as its goals, funding sources, technical advancements, regulatory recommendations, and communication strategies. Flood insurance claims and on-going property loss data demonstrate that in Colorado, reliance on flood inundation maps alone does not provide a comprehensive characterization of hazards imposed by river processes. Recognizing this gap and spurred by four billion dollars in damage in 2013, in 2014 the Colorado legislature allocated funding to study the feasibility of and develop an “Erosion Hazard” mapping program. The program began with a proof-of-concept study in 2015 where several existing technical standards were reviewed and tested for their applicability within the state. Major recommendations from this work were: 1) Colorado develop more flexible and robust technical standards 2) Colorado implement a locally-sponsored, voluntary, and incentive-based hazard mapping program and 3) The name of the program be changed to “Fluvial Hazard Zone Mapping” rather than “erosion hazard mapping” as there are substantial hazards in addition to erosion that must be considered. In 2017, Colorado began the Fluvial Hazard Zone Mapping Pilot program. The program is built on three goals: 1) to develop a scientifically defensible set of mapping standards for Colorado (i.e. develop a protocol that can be used anywhere within the state) 2) implement fluvial hazard mapping throughout the state and 3) reduce damage from future flood events by increasing awareness of fluvial hazards thereby leading to better land use decisions. The technical work has been executed with several partners and has resulted in an advancement of the understanding of both the driving forces (hydrology) and the fluvial responses after disturbance, particularly as they relate to stream power. Several studies were completed that assessed the response and associated damages that communities sustained and correlated this with geomorphic characteristics. FHZ mapping was completed for 8 pilot communities in a diversity of physiographic regions throughout the state and covered approximately 450 miles of stream corridors. For communities who sought to adopt regulations for land use within the FHZ, a model ordinance was developed to provide to pilot communities. After several iterations, it was clear that the best regulatory support that could be provided to communities was a short, concise ordnance from which each community could build regulations that were both applicable and palatable with the overall objective of avoiding damages during future floods. As the FHZ program evolves, it is showing value to the State of Colorado in wildfire planning and response as well as for the identification of conservation areas and watershed-scale restoration …

2020Katie Jagt
Financing the risk of catastrophic wildfire reduction: The Forest Resilience Bond

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Nick Wobbrock Symposium Session: 2020 – 08 Pre-Disaster: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure Topics covered: _other, beavers, community involvement, outside PNW, riparian, risk, and stream ABSTRACTIn 2018, wildfires in the United States caused an estimated $24 billion in economic losses—a record-high—claiming human lives, damaging property, releasing greenhouse gases, contaminating water supplies and harming the forest products and tourism industries. This could be a sign of things to come, as climate change raises temperatures and exacerbates drought conditions and forest degradation in the American West. A new $4.6 million-dollar pilot project in the Tahoe National Forest—called the Forest Resilience Bond—is looking for a creative solution to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire by financing forest restoration through a public-private partnership. WRI’s research on Protecting Drinking Water at the Source shows that natural infrastructure such as forests can help reduce wildfire risks, protect water quality and make communities more resilient if disaster strikes. WRI collaborated with Blue Forest Conservation and Encourage Capital, two environmentally-minded investment firms, to develop a way to proactively finance forest restoration. To help make the financial case for this first transaction, WRI provided economic analysis to beneficiaries, investors and partners including the U.S. Forest Service, the state of California, Yuba Water Agency, and the National Forest Foundation. Communities in the area were consulted to make sure stakeholders understood the bond’s benefits, including the protection of recreational resources, less exposure to smoke and more forest-related job opportunities. In 2018, the first Forest Resilience Bond secured $4.6 million in blended private finance for the upfront costs of forest restoration and to provide flexibility to accelerate restoration as needed. The bond will fund the restoration of 15,000 acres of forest in the North Yuba River Watershed in the Sierra Nevada. WRI and Blue Forest Conservation are preparing for future Forest Resilience Bond transactions to benefit other at-risk landscapes across the American West. WRI is also working with development agencies, investors and conservation partners to explore similar finance mechanisms for flood risk reduction and community resiliency in the developing world. Wildfires endanger the environment, economies, and health across the western United States. To avoid future catastrophic fires, more innovative partnerships like the Forest Resilience Bond will be needed to pay for forest health interventions across the fire-prone West. This pilot in the Yuba River Watershed is the first instance in which private capital has been mobilized to fight wildfires in the U.S., but with more than 50 million acres of National Forest land at risk of burning over the coming year, more new ideas like this one will be …

2020Nick Wobbrock
Opportunities from the Ashes: Pursuing Multiple Benefit Community and Landscape Resilience Following

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Virginia Mahacek Symposium Session: 2020 – 08 Pre-Disaster: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure Topics covered: beavers, climate change, floodplain, lessons learned, outside PNW, riparian, risk, and sediment transport ABSTRACTRecent catastrophic wildfires have caused devastating human impacts including deaths, injuries, health risk exposures, and emotional trauma. These are compelling motives well beyond the watershed and ecosystem benefits we will focus on herein. Over the last decade, annual wildfire property losses across the United States ranged from $0.5 billion to as much as $24 billion in 2018. California has by far the highest number of properties at risk from wildfire of any state, estimated to be approximately 2.1 million properties. The ten most costly catastrophic wildfires (based on property loss) in our nation’s history all occurred in California, with six of the top ten occurring in 2017 and 2018. Annual Federal fire suppression spending (by USFS and DOI agencies) has risen sharply to around $3.1 billion in 2018, even as acreages burned and damages incurred also increased. California’s state spending on fire suppression soared to $947 million in 2017/18. On top of the enormous costs in property losses and fire suppression, destructive wildfires have required emergency response, clean-up and recovery support on a scale previously associated with hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods. As of November 2019, the FEMA Disaster Relief Fund cumulative obligations for California’s 2017 and 2018 Wildfires exceeded $2 billion. The State’s contribution is nearly another billion. This presentation explores how the increasing economic burden of response, property damage, and recovery after catastrophic wildfire, along with a growing demand for resilient landscapes as a means of wildfire hazard reduction, are becoming drivers of watershed management. Recovery activities, resilience planning and funding trends will be described, with examples from the 2017 Sonoma Complex Fires and other recent California wildfires. Despite decades of scientifically-driven technical advances and substantial investment on salmonids, the degradation of watersheds and river systems continues to outpace fish population recovery and ecosystem sustainability. While the science and practice of river restoration has progressed beyond site-scale treatment, effective implementation remains challenged by complex and compartmentalized mandates and funding limitations, while suffering uneven public support and political will. We consider how demand for wildfire hazard reduction using multi-benefit approaches is an emerging driver on forest and water resource management decisions, particularly in light of climate change and population growth pressure. Viewing river restoration through the lens of catastrophic wildfire provides a means to: 1) expand beyond traditional goals and outcome metrics; 2) engage at scale across jurisdictions and ownerships; 3) diversify stakeholders; 4) improve upland material and process contributions to aquatic ecosystems; and, 5) access additional resources and expertise for innovative solutions. Opportunities to restore natural and working uplands, riparian corridors, and wetlands with State investments on air quality, human health, carbon sequestration, and water supply security are growing. FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) and Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program (PDM) support for watershed planning as well as implementation of a range of treatments is expanding. Finally, river restoration planning that fails to consider the hydrologic, sediment, and wood loads from either catastrophic fire or wildfire hazard reduction treatments may overlook pertinent context as well as …

2020Virginia Mahacek
Stream and Floodplain Restoration on North Touchet River: Designing and Building on Private Lands Wi

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Paul DeVries Symposium Session: 2020 – 07 Selling the solution: Piloting projects and stakeholder engagement Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, floodplain, and riparian ABSTRACTThis talk is a case study of implementing reach scale restoration projects while working under changing physical conditions and landowner perspectives, and learning from both successes and failures. The North Touchet River is a steep, dynamic channel that flows predominantly through private lands. The river has been confined extensively by levees including many constructed after the 1996 flood, resulting in a plane bed channel with coarse substrates that has been described as a “firehose”. Salmonid habitat quality is consequently poor, especially for juvenile rearing. In general, landowners along the river view the removal of levees and addition of large wood with trepidation. A sentiment exists that the river will unravel and affect property integrity and value, where no action is preferred by most. Much of this stems from uncertainty associated with active channel processes, and the belief that these processes should and can be controlled. Nonetheless, notable channel instability still exists within various reaches. After extensive interactions between the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) and landowners, general agreement to proceed was obtained, and 100% designs were prepared for two such unstable reaches. One was built, the other not. This talk focuses primarily on the project that was built in the vicinity of the confluence with the Wolf Fork. This involved creating instream habitat structure, working with channel sedimentation and migration processes, and increasing floodplain connectivity while increasing flood protection with a strategically designed levee setback. Extensive sediment deposition, channel changes, and flooding of a residence have occurred periodically, reflecting both natural processes and previous unsuccessful attempts to control the river. Extensive flooding, erosion, and deposition affected the project reach throughout the project duration, requiring adaptive planning, design and construction. At the same time, the nature of the changes provided a context for discussing uncertainty in design, construction, and expected outcomes with the landowner. An acceptance of risks, and understanding how the design was conceived to help reduce but not eliminate those risks while working towards restoring salmon and steelhead habitat, was achieved in a way that met goals of both the project and the landowner. Now, with successful construction and landowner approval of the finished product, the Wolf Fork project will provide the CTUIR with a tangible example to other landowners for discussing uncertainty in designing, building, functioning, and impacts of such projects elsewhere in the basin. This includes potentially the one that has not been built yet. In that instance, the design changed substantially from a relic channel remeander to various fish passage structures at a headcut, and multiple times in response to changing and contrasting landowner and funding agency requirements. In the long view, it is possible our preferred, remeander concept may be resurrected with completion of the Wolf Fork …

2020Paul DeVries
Planning “total restoration” of a pilot watershed

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Reid Camp Symposium Session: 2020 – 07 Selling the solution: Piloting projects and stakeholder engagement Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, estuary, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, lessons learned, monitoring, riparian, and stream ABSTRACTReid Camp The Middle Nemah River drains approximately 6,000 hectares (nearly 15,000 acres) into Willapa Bay (Washington), and is important habitat for chum (Oncorhynchus keta), Chinook (O. tshawytscha), coho (O. kisutch), and steelhead (O. mykiss). However, legacy impacts from construction of a railroad within the channel migration zone, stream cleaning, and other land-use activities have impaired salmonid productivity in this sub-basin. Willapa Bay Lead Entity (WBLE) and Pacific Conservation District (PCD) recently selected the Middle Nemah as a pilot watershed, to demonstrate potential for “complete restoration.” Under this emerging model of restoration, the primary goal is implementation of restoration actions across an entire watershed, at a level sufficient to restore currently impaired river and riparian functions, within a relatively short timeframe (five years in this case). Working with a team of stakeholders that included landowners (WDNR and Hancock Natural Resources Group), WBLE, PCD, WDFW, the Willapa Bay Fisheries Enhancement Group, Coast Salmon Partnership, and our partners Biohabitats, we developed and implemented a rapid habitat protocol to survey the mapped current anadromous zone within the watershed, approximately 35 km (22 miles) of mainstem and tributary channels. Survey results were then analyzed and coupled with existing land-use data to develop an assessment of current river and riparian functions and processes throughout the watershed, identify process impairments, and develop recommendations for a suite of actions that would mitigate these impairments. In collaboration with the stakeholder group, these actions were then prioritized along a simplified scoring schema focusing on ecological improvement. A single project was then brought forward to the preliminary design phase, and concepts were developed for total restoration of the entire watershed. Recommended restoration actions included a combination of engineered approaches and “low-tech process-based” restoration (LTPBR). Results from this effort suggest that a comprehensive plan for restoration of moderate-sized river sub-basins is possible, at a reasonable economic …

2020Reid Camp
Southern Resident Killer Whales – Top Predators in need of a Restored Ecosystem

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Kenneth Balcomb Symposium Session: 2020 – Invited Speaker Topics covered: _other, estuary, lessons learned, monitoring, and tidal ABSTRACTKiller whales have been known since antiquity as voracious marine predators in all oceans, and they have played an iconic role in the mythology of indigenous coastal communities in the Pacific Northwest of North America. Only in the recent 50 years have scientists been able to really “know” killer whales as a result of individual recognition techniques (photo-identification), molecular genetic techniques, and innovative studies involving drones, fecal sampling, and acoustic research. The speaker will provide a brief history of the development of these techniques so that participants may appreciate and distinguish knowledge gained by scientific methods in contrast mythologies in past and present human …

2020Kenneth Balcomb
Floods, Drought, and Alternate States in Algal-based River Food Webs

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Mary E. Power Symposium Session: 2020 – Invited Speaker Topics covered: beavers, floodplain, hydraulics, monitoring, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTIn sunlit western rivers, winter and summer flows determine the production, types, and fate of algae in summertime food webs. Ecologically critical flows depend not only on precipitation regimes, but also on how precipitation is stored and released from a watershed’s “Critical Zone”: the weathered rock, soil, and vegetation that receives, transforms, and exchanges water between the atmosphere, subsurface storage, and runoff feeding surface waters. Different flow regimes lead to different alternative food web states, with different consequences for fish production and riverine linkages to upland and coastal ecosystems. The Eel River, a river along the California North Coast under Mediterranean seasonality, has shown us three alternative summer food web states, with food chains of different length that determine the production, food quality, and fate of attached algae and of the aquatic consumers that depend on …

2020Mary E. Power
Quantitative Food Web Analysis to Detangle Restoration Effectiveness in Co-limited Habitats

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: John Jorgensen Symposium Session: 2020 – 05 Assessing biotic response to environmental change Topics covered: amphibians, beavers, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, monitoring, riparian, and stream ABSTRACTQuantifying carrying capacity in lotic ecosystems is central to identifying limiting factors and prioritizing restoration actions for native anadromous salmonid populations. Geomorphic and habitat-based monitoring metrics, models, and assessments are available to evaluate ongoing physical limitations in stream reaches. However, these approaches have inherently limited ability to resolve ongoing uncertainties of biologically mediated limitation, such as food preference, food availability, and competition with non-native species. Further, biological assessment tools that use static metrics (abundance, biomass and diversity) cannot directly measure energetic limitations (food availability and trophic routing), and therefore remain inadequate for quantitatively defining biotic limitations, contributing to carrying capacity. Thus, alternative monitoring protocols and subsequent analytical procedures are needed to capture food web processes that directly affect energetic routing. To understand the effectiveness of habitat restoration treatments designed to increase carrying capacity in co-limited streams, we measured food web responses within a spring creek over multiple years in the Upper Columbia River Basin (WA). We used trophic basis of production and bioenergetic methods to identify and quantify co-limited drivers. Here we present and discuss: 1) a quantitative food web approach and its associated advantages and disadvantages in the context of stream restoration, 2) initial project results using estimates of energy routing to evaluate habitat restoration and potential impacts of non-native fish, and 3) a new quantitative analysis tool (R package) and its application in a broader management …

2020John Jorgensen
Aquatic Organism Passage for Boreal Toads – Stream Restoration for Species other than Fish

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Daniel March Symposium Session: 2020 – 05 Assessing biotic response to environmental change Topics covered: amphibians, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), lessons learned, monitoring, outside PNW, stream, and terrestrial species ABSTRACTTreatment of stream channels, and the environment in general, half a century ago was much different than the thought process today. At that time, things like stream channels and floodplains were nuisance items that needed proper engineering to improve nature and make more efficient use of resources and valuable space. It was common practice to put streams into pipes for long distances and fill the adjacent floodplain. This is especially true in narrow valleys were space is limited. A prime example is South Clear Creek (SCC) near Georgetown, CO. During construction of a series of hydroelectric dams and the associated infrastructure in the early 60s, staging area for equipment and materials was limited. A ready solution was to place South Clear Creek in a pipe and fill the adjacent floodplain to facilitate construction of adjacent infrastructure. The result was fracturing of habitat for the Boreal Toad, currently listed as an endangered species. Restoration of SCC was a condition of recent Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) relicensing of the Cabin Creek Hydroelectric Generating Station. The goal of the restoration project is reconnection of Boreal Toad habitat through the removal of ~400’ of CMP and restoration of ~500’ of stream channel and floodplain. The presentation will discuss: project history, pre-construction conditions, Boreal Toad needs, stream/floodplain restoration metrics, site restrictions and high altitude (>10,000’) construction …

2020Daniel March
On Patients and Patience: Stream Restoration as a Healing Process

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Mark Beardsley Symposium Session: 2020 – 05 Assessing biotic response to environmental change Topics covered: beavers, community involvement, floodplain, lessons learned, monitoring, riparian, risk, and stream ABSTRACTBiotic processes are now recognized as key drivers of stream form and function that work in concert with hydrological and geomorphic processes, not separately from them. When we understand streams as integrated biophysical ecosystems rather than as physical habitat that simply houses plants and animals, restoration appears less like less like a physical engineering exercise and more like an organic healing process. Restoration efforts can be thought of less like construction projects and more like medical treatments. From this view, streams are like patients. They are complex organic systems that we help heal—not physical things that we design and build. We cannot simply design biotic processes or build biotic communities. Healing takes time and organic restoration requires patience. As in medicine, careful management over time (rehabilitation) is often necessary in addition to, or instead of, instant fixes (surgery). Health, healing, and medical analogies are nothing new to the field of ecological restoration. As stream conservation and restoration practitioners, we feel the health concept should be more than a metaphor. It is a mindset and a model—a way of thinking and a practical approach to stream restoration that respects the inherent complexity of natural functioning stream ecosystems. What does it mean for a stream to be healthy? We think it is a lot like what it means for a person or other living organism to be healthy. Medical definitions of human health are based on the ability to perform vital functions normally or properly; ability to perform valued roles; ability to deal with stress; and anatomic, physiologic, and psychological integrity. These traits apply to streams and other ecosystems in much the same way. Like organisms, streams are very complex systems (eco-systems) whose ability to perform vital functions and valuable roles, and to deal with stress (that is, to be resilient), depends on hydrological, physicochemical, and biological integrity. The shift from an engineering/construction mindset to a medical/healing mindset opens the door to process-based restoration. It fits neatly with the four principles of process-based restoration (Beechie et al. 2010) and the five guidelines for ecologically successful river restoration (Palmer et al. 2005). In this talk, we share how the stream health model guides our assessment, diagnosis, treatment, monitoring, and evaluation of projects. Our examples come from work on small streams in the Colorado Rockies, but we think the concepts apply to all stream and river restoration efforts that seek natural and sustainable …

2020Mark Beardsley
Perspectives in the Mitigation of Rockslides affecting Fish Migration

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Barry Chilibeck Symposium Session: 2020 – Invited Speaker Topics covered: beavers, Canada, fish passage, hydraulics, lessons learned, risk, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTLandslides are a physical process that had an undeniable effect on the landscapes within the Pacific Northwest. Recently, they have been experienced on several rivers that have affected Pacific salmon in profound ways. This talk is going to look at several recent landslides on rivers with Pacific Salmon and other fisheries resources, the effects on the communities and people that depend on fish, the work done to mitigate the physical and biological damage, and lasting influences and future risks. The Seymour River is a small coastal watershed in the heart of Vancouver’s North Shore mountains. The upper watershed forms part of Metro Vancouver’s water supply while the lower areas provide recreational and park values. A 50,000 m3 rockslide in the lower Seymour River canyon in December 2014 resulted in a complete blockage of the river and the migration of Steelhead, Coho, Pink and Chinook salmon upstream – and downstream. This river’s story chronicles the community-led efforts and success in ensuring salmon prevail and restoring access to the river for fish for future generations. Technically, this mitigation work examines the trade-off analysis completed to assess the potential slide mitigation, and the issues that led to a passive, river-based approach that utilized the stream power of the slide to mobilize, reform and distribute the slide debris downstream, effectively re-grading the rockfall cascade. The process was not without risk due to the time required to seasonally work on the slide during the low flow period and then monitor and assess the slide during the interim months. The approach relied on determining the size of slide debris that could be mobilized, as well as the configuration of the slide debris as it shifted and moved during high flow events. By continually oversteepening the instream face of the rockslide by selective rock breaking, the slide was removed. Biological programs and monitoring played a key part in ensuring that the salmon and steelhead stocks native to the Seymour were not extirpated during the 5 years of seasonal work. Without the efforts of community partners – notably the Seymour Salmonid Society – both the slide mitigation and support work would not have happened. They led the operation of the floating fish fence and fish collection; conservation hatchery restocking of the river; and continued assessment of downstream and upstream migrants. Shortly after completion of the 2019 work program on the slide, late summer rains brought some high flows into the watershed and in late August 2019, the first adult coho was observed above the slide. Follow-up radio tagging confirmed passage through the slide in September 2019 and there are ongoing efforts to monitor the movement and recovery of salmon and steelhead. The Fraser River is one of North America’s foremost freshwater habitat for wild salmon encompassing largely an undammed, unregulated ecosystem from the Canadian Rockies to Vancouver, BC. While most people know about Hell’s Gate and the fishways that continues to mitigate that rockslide, they are largely unaware that the Fraser River continues to flow through hundreds of kilometers of canyons and bedrock formations that have inherent rock fall and slide risks. Roughly 100 years after Hell’s Gate Slide, the Big Bar Slide is proving that history repeats itself. On or about November 1st 2018, a massive slide event occurred near Big Bar on the Fraser River, 40 km North of Lillooet, BC. Unbeknownst for months, the slide was discovered in early spring 2019 before freshet by local ranchers and river rafters. The chain of events and actions triggered by the impacts of the slide on one of the largest natural salmon-producing rivers is a continuing story. While the biological and cultural implications of this event are much better understood than Hell’s gate, the technical challenges are perhaps even more daunting given the location and local topography of the Big Bar slide. This presentation highlights the capcity and effort that can be harnessed when organizational barriers are dissolved and people come together for a common cause, the limits that still persist and challenges of what can be achieved to mitigate a slide to restore fish passage on a massive river in a remote isolated …

2020Barry Chilibeck
Multi-Year Monitoring of Stage 0 Restoration Using a Geomorphic Complexity Approach

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Daniel Scott Symposium Session: 2020 – 04 Observe Stage 0 Topics covered: beavers, lessons learned, monitoring, and sediment transport ABSTRACTStage 0 Restoration seeks to restore natural fluvial processes to valley bottoms to sustain a spatially heterogeneous and dynamic morphologic state that can then support a robust and resilient fluvial ecosystem. While monitoring the ecological response of Stage 0 restoration is feasible and effective, the multi-channel, dynamic, and wood-rich state produced by restoration complicates monitoring of the geomorphic response that underpins fluvial ecology. We address these monitoring challenges by testing a geomorphic complexity-based monitoring approach that integrates both spatial and temporal data from a Stage 0 restoration site on Deer Creek, Oregon. We present the geomorphic and wood dynamics outcomes immediately following restoration, the moderate-term geomorphic trajectory pre- and post-restoration, and short-term wood jam dynamics post-restoration. Our monitoring framework seeks to capture how restoration influences: valley bottom spatial heterogeneity; variability, or dynamism, in valley bottom morphology through time; and the trajectory of geomorphic response before and after restoration. We accomplish this by mapping high- and low-altitude aerial imagery to quantify valley bottom metrics of spatial heterogeneity. We contextualize these measurements of spatial heterogeneity by conducting this mapping over a period covering 11 years pre-restoration and 3 years post-restoration, which allows us to evaluate both the dynamism of channel morphology from year to year and the moderate-term trend in geomorphic response both pre- and post-restoration. Because the geomorphic response to Stage 0 restoration depends on wood jam dynamics, we also apply the recently developed Wood jam Dynamics Database and Assessment Model (WooDDAM; a standardized field protocol and online database for monitoring and understanding wood jam dynamics) to survey wood jam characteristics and dynamics along Deer Creek. We use the broader WooDDAM database, consisting of hundreds of observations of wood jam dynamics, to contextualize and explain wood jam dynamics in Deer Creek. We find that valley bottom-focused metrics, such as the ratio of active channel to valley bottom area and the Shannon equitability index (a measure of the relative distribution of morphologic patches across the valley bottom) are most representative of the ecogeomorphic processes targeted by Stage 0 restoration, such as channel migration, avulsion, widening, vegetation establishment on deposited surfaces, and vegetation recruitment to the channel. They are also more robust to data quality issues and mapping errors than more traditional metrics such as braiding indices. We use data and observations from Deer Creek to make recommendations on how to effectively monitor the geomorphic response of other Stage 0 restoration projects. We also present results from monitoring of Deer Creek, demonstrating that monitoring must both capture relevant indicators of processes and account for flow history. We present this research to help improve monitoring and understanding of the geomorphic effects of complex, valley bottom-scale river …

2020Daniel Scott
Towards a Programmatic Monitoring Plan for Restoration to Stage 0

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: William Brignon Symposium Session: 2020 – 04 Observe Stage 0 Topics covered: beavers, hydraulics, lessons learned, monitoring, riparian, and stream ABSTRACTStage 0 is the initial, pre-disturbance condition in the Stream Evolution Model described by Cluer and Thorne (2013). Recently, a group of US Forest Service restoration practitioners and their partners have been restoring depositional valley bottoms to Stage 0 to reverse the effects of historic land-use practices that degraded dynamic wetland-stream complexes (Powers et al. 2018) which support abundant native biota. Twenty-five of these process-based restoration projects have been implemented throughout Oregon. Several of them are comprehensive projects designed to completely reconnect depositional valley bottoms over extended areas, whereas others applied more traditional techniques to return smaller areas of the valley bottom to a pre-disturbance condition. Regardless of the methods and scale of these projects, the goal of restoring dynamic valley bottom processes is the same. In response to scientific, legal, and policy questions about these projects we gathered US Forest Service restoration practitioners and their colleagues for a series of workshops to specifically define this type of restoration and build influence diagrams of key ecological processes at play. This presentation will provide an overview of the workshop outcomes and share how they will be used to develop a programmatic monitoring plan for US Forest Service projects that aim to restore valley bottoms to Stage 0. There will be a complimentary poster presentation so RRNW attendees can delve deeper into the influence diagram and offer feedback about the definition, as well as the ecological parameters and their …

2020William Brignon
Low-Tech Process-Based Restoration Design Principles

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Joe Wheaton Symposium Session: 2020 – 04 Observe Stage 0 Topics covered: _other, beavers, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), and stream ABSTRACTThe scope of riverscape degradation far exceeds the modest footprint and scalability of most traditional restoration techniques with expensive price tags. Modern restoration practice borrows from a design process and logic entirely from engineering practice. Low-tech process-based restoration of riverscapes provides a potentially scalable solution that could rival the scope of degradation, but requires a fundamentally different and more efficient design approach drawing on physical and ecological principles. In this presentation we present riverscapes restoration principles and describe a robust, and rigorous design process that is agile enough to be carried out at the reach-scale within hours to day(s), as opposed to weeks to months. While individual low-tech, hand-built structures are specified in the design, the focus is at initiating and promoting processes at the “complex-scale” (a collection of structures), and these complexes help keep a focus on improving conditions at the reach scale. Unlike most designs, the focus here is not on stability of the structures, but on the processes and dynamics they are designed to initially mimic, quickly promote and eventually sustain. Key processes in structurally-starved riverscapes we focus on are wood accumulation and beaver dam activity. Examples from projects throughout the western US will be highlighted to show how the design process plays out. The upshot is that the footprint of restoration for the same amount of design effort can spent 10’s to 100’s of miles instead of 100’s to 1000’s of …

2020Joe Wheaton
A restoration program which the planning team will never live to see the result, San Juan River

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Neil Goeller Symposium Session: 2020 – 03 An ecological approach to restoration Topics covered: Canada, floodplain, monitoring, riparian, stream, and wetlands ABSTRACTA restoration program which the planning team will never live to see the result, San It is said that “The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit.”, (Nelson Henderson) Forest harvesting in the San Juan River extends to the early 1900’s and little evidence remains of the pre-harvest channel conditions. Effects of historic activities emerged in the 1980s following assessments of fish habitat, channel morphology and riparian conditions. In the mid-1990s, the recently created San Juan Roundtable, composed of First Nations, Provincial and Federal Governments, Industry and other stakeholders brought a structured approach to watershed management and restoration leveraging government funding for projects. Fish habitat, channel stability and landslide sediment delivery assessments prompted an upland restoration program targeting sediment source areas. Upslope remediation and improvements in forest management practices in the basin are generally accepted to have mitigated the majority of sediment sources with economical remediation potential. Sediment transport estimates have shown that the higher gradient upland streams are recovering as they are able to convey sediment to the floodplain. However; sediment delivered to the floodplain has had a detrimental impact to channel morphology and fish habitat. Loss of riparian structure and strength has resulted in morphological changes in the floodplain mainstem channel from which the river appears unable to recover. In the 2010’s a process based restoration program was initiated by the roundtable. This program established the seeds from which the recovery of the river would eventually grow. The two primary projects undertaken by the roundtable partners were willow plantings on gravel bars and inter-planting conifer saplings in a broad corridor along the river. Willow plantings were intended to accelerate gravel bar vegetation succession and stabilization and attenuate sediment. The riparian planting was intended to begin establishing a resilient corridor of trees which will hopefully survive to maturity and begin to have an impact in the next 60 to 100 years. The long-term goal is to counteract the rivers aggressive reworking of the floodplain. The British Columbia Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNR) developed a research project to study this work. Current research has extended previous studies examining sediment dynamics, morphological changes and hydrological changes and their implications for fish habitat and restoration activities. Data collection included multiple LiDAR flights, drone based DEMs, historic air photos, sediment mapping, time lapse camera footage and a detailed sediment movement study using passive integrated transponder (PIT) tagged rocks. Results have begun to show the channel changes in response to weakened riparian structure and historic restoration efforts. Gravel bar plantings are rarely lost due to erosion. Sediment tracking shows deposition occurs primarily at bar apexes. Sediment transport rates have been calculated using LiDAR differencing. Bank erosion is widely variable, with three bars (of 18 mapped) yielding the majority of sediment. High rates of bank erosion are associated with decaying riparian alder stands. The unstable channel morphology poses serious challenges for fisheries management in addition to the changing nature of flows attributed to climate change.Juan River, British Columbia, …

2020Neil Goeller
Considering Sediment Dynamics in River Restoration Design

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Travis Stroth Symposium Session: 2020 – 02 Considering sediment dynamics in river restoration design Topics covered: modeling, outside PNW, and sediment transport ABSTRACTThe complex nature of river systems presents many challenges to understanding, analyzing, and designing in the context of stream management and restoration. River science and practice has progressed greatly through the years, but still has much room to grow to increase the effectiveness and sustainability of our management and restoration activities. The most efficient path moving forward will need to continue a feedback loop between academia and practice to apply the most current science and guide future research focus areas. River science and research has recognized and promoted the importance of considering sediment transport dynamics in the context of river restoration design for many years; however, design practitioners have adopted the use of sediment transport concepts and tools for design at widely varying levels within the field. Many potential constraints exist for design projects that limit the consideration of sediment transport, including project timeline-budget and the lack of available data, knowledge of available tools and associated limitations, and confidence in calculations due to uncertainties and often erratic results. Despite constraints, our design team believes sediment transport analyses can still provide a useful line of evidence for design within typical project constraints by utilizing a combination of new concepts and tools and older techniques. Recent research conducted by Colorado State University for the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) developed new perspectives and tools to consider sediment transport in river restoration design, including a risk-based level of design approach and the spreadsheet-based Capacity-Supply Ratio design tool (CSR Tool). A summary of the key findings from this research will be presented, including how sediment transport analyses relate to the risk-based level of design approach and the development of the CSR Tool, created as part of my Master’s research, to aid in channel design based on reach-scale sediment transport balance and the ‘total effectiveness’ technique. The remainder of the presentation will discuss insights from the application of these techniques and tools for a river restoration design project on the Cache la Poudre River at River Bluffs Open Space near Windsor, Colorado. Monitoring data from pre-post construction and post runoff support the utility of these new techniques as an informative and effective line of evidence in the design process. The risk-based level of design approach and streamlined programs such as the CSR Tool can provide a useful basis for practitioners to consider sediment transport dynamics in river restoration design within typical project budget and timeline constraints. A discussion of the application of these techniques and tools contributes useful insight into amalgamating the latest scientific research and restoration design practice to support the larger session topic ‘Considering Sediment Transport Dynamics in River Restoration Design: The State of …

2020Travis Stroth
Managing Stream Corridor Evolution in the Sierra Foothills

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Damion Ciotti Symposium Session: 2020 – 04 Observe Stage 0 Topics covered: beavers, floodplain, hydraulics, lessons learned, outside PNW, riparian, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTDevelopments in our understanding of stream channel evolution and application of ecological design have changed not only the restoration approach in degraded valley bottoms but also the vision and measure of success. Disconnected alluvial streams are unable to rework floodplain surfaces and have lost their ability to maintain a shifting mosaic of aquatic and terrestrial habitat heterogeneity. In Sierra foothill streams of California this has significant negative consequences for anadromous fish, migratory birds and other ecosystem services such as water and carbon storage. Most valley bottoms in the Sierra foothills have been desiccated for over a century due to mining activities, agricultural and urban development. Common restoration practices aim to stabilize channel banks or construct habitat features in streams that remain isolated from their floodplains. The cumulative effect is a stream corridor that is dominated by oak savanna and blackberry with limited ability to evolve to higher ecosystem value. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is now in its fourth year of applying ecological design principles to the restoration of streams in agricultural and suburban communities of the Sierra foothills. We believe societal and individual landowner needs and goals are compatible with a more functional and dynamic stream corridor. Design attention has moved from the single stream channel focus to modifying the human components of the stream corridor so it may evolve. This involves assessing the constraints to fluvial dynamics including flood risks, transportation and water infrastructure, livestock management, and mitigation projects. Important design components of this shift in approach include; design at the valley scale; assessing natural and artificial geomorphic controls; assisting valley bottom communities and landowners accommodate a more dynamic river; and designing a minimum dosage approach that relies on the ecosystems capacity to recover. Metrics of success focus on the amount of fluvial space and connectivity attained and biogeomorphic processes restored. This approach is not suited for programs or practitioners aiming to immediately construct a specific stream habitat type. By instead working to evolve stream corridors towards higher levels of complexity the practitioner is able to build a more resilient project at a larger spatial scale. A completed demonstration project along with others under various stages of development will be …

2020Damion Ciotti
Protecting and Restoring Cold Water Refuges in the Columbia River

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: John Palmer Symposium Session: 2020 – 01 Protecting critical flows Topics covered: climate change, estuary, fish passage, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, floodplain, hydraulics, monitoring, and stream ABSTRACTCold water refuges (CWR) in the Columbia River provide important resting areas for threatened and endangered species, steelhead and fall chinook, during their summer migration from the Pacific Ocean to spawning grounds in the Snake River Basin. Scientists (Goniea et al 2006, Keefer et al 2009, Keefer et al 2018) have documented the use of cold tributaries of the Columbia River for migrating salmonids in the summer when temperatures in the mainstem are higher than optimum for fish health. With rising temperature trends predicted from climate change models in the Columbia River, migrating salmonids may seek relief in greater numbers and over a longer period of time making CWR even more important in the future. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in partnership with agencies, tribes, and organizations is nearing the end of a four-year project to evaluate CWR in the lower Columbia River basin from the mouth of the Columbia River to its confluence with the Snake River. EPA released a draft Columbia River CWR Plan in October 2019 for stakeholder review and plans on issuing the final plan in 2020. The objectives of EPA’s Columbia River CWR Plan are to: 1) Identify CWR currently available for use by migrating salmon; 2) Assess the sufficiency of the refuges for current and future populations; and 3) Identify strategies to protect and restore high quality CWR in the future. This presentation provides an overview of EPA’s draft Columbia River CWR Plan. In the plan, EPA has identified 12 primary CWR tributaries to the lower Columbia River currently used by migrating salmonids or that have features (e.g., temperature, flow, depth, no physical barriers) that make them important cold water areas for migrating salmonids. EPA completed “snapshot” watershed assessments of the 12 primary CWR tributaries and 2 “restore” CWR tributaries to protect and restore. These tributaries are the Cowlitz River, Lewis River, Sandy River, Tanner Creek, Eagle Creek, Herman Creek, Wind River, White Salmon River, Little White Salmon River, Klickitat River, Hood River, Deschutes River, 15 Mile-Creek, and Umatilla River. The purpose of these “snapshots” is to provide scientific information to local watershed groups and other users information on: 1) the extent and quality of the CWR in their watershed; 2) the features that make it a good CWR; 3) factors affecting watershed temperatures (e.g., shade, dams and hydromodifications, water use, climate change); 4) the alignment of other watershed restoration work with CWR protection goals for multi-objective planning; and 5) recommendations for protection and restoration. In this presentation, we will discuss our findings and recommendations to protect and restore CWR, our outreach efforts and community involvement, and our goal for accurate and relevant information to enable local users to leverage funding to support their ongoing efforts that may also benefit cold water refuge …

2020John Palmer
Into the multiverse: River restoration versus the Anthropocene

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Peter Downs Symposium Session: 2020 – Invited Speaker Topics covered: climate change, floodplain, lessons learned, monitoring, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTThe (inter)discipline of river restoration has now been practiced for 30 years. Following several decades of growing environmental awareness and scientific recognition of human-induced ‘river stresses’, the 1980s saw the global uptake of environmental assessment legislation, recognition of the performance and cost benefits of integrating conservation into river management, and concerns for achieving sustainable actions. Since ca.1990, river restoration has become a global phenomenon and multi-billion-dollar business. While deliberations continue about the ultimate goal in restoring rivers, restoration in practise adds a conservation-focused third element to river management, joining far longer-held concerns for water resource provision and river hazard minimization to result in an interdisciplinary ‘river management …

2020Peter Downs
Designing for failure – Rethinking how we can restore ecosystem resilience

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Marjorie Wolfe Symposium Session: 2020 – 03 An ecological approach to restoration Topics covered: beavers, climate change, estuary, fish passage, floodplain, hydraulics, monitoring, risk, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTIn a future featuring climate and land-use changes, enduring success in delivering ecosystem resilience relies on restoring the capacity of the river to adapt to the impacts of those changes. Yet we continue to design for stability, selecting channel dimensions, gradients and planforms suited to past and current flow and sediment regimes, and making little or no allowance for adjustment and evolution of the fluvial system. Further, we make clear the delineations between the river’s channel (or channels), its associated wetlands, and its floodplains, often to fit permitting requirements. The unintended consequences of designing for stability and rigidly defining each component of the complex channel-wetland-floodplain system are that the habitats provided by the restoration are only functional within a narrow range of hydrologic, sediment and environmental conditions. When these conditions change, a fixed, stable channel-wetland-floodplain design cannot adapt progressively to accommodate change, and this may lead to abrupt and radical adjustment that are, in engineering terms, regarded as catastrophic failure of the project. We must recognize that it is not a matter of if an engineered log jam will be mobilized or a meander bend will shift, but when and how. The fact is that wood rots and banks erode in nature and, in a restored reach, if they don’t move when they should, this may be the worst possible outcome for habitats and biodiversity in a river. This presentation uses case studies to help us rethink restoration design approaches appropriate to a future that is not just uncertain but unknowable. Issues addressed include designing for failure, monitoring for success, and meeting the challenges posed by permitting and funding requirements. Case studies include: projects that have been stable but haven’t been resilient, due to permitting or funding restrictions, and; projects that have delivered more resilient habitat, even though they have ‘failed’ when judged against their stable design …

2020Marjorie Wolfe
Quantifying and predicting the role of in-stream wood on general bed scour and the implications to s

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Tim Abbe Symposium Session: 2020 – 02 Considering sediment dynamics in river restoration design Topics covered: estuary, fish passage, fish-salmon, floodplain, hydraulics, lessons learned, monitoring, riparian, sediment transport, and wood ABSTRACTWood material can directly influence fluvial processes that control channel planform, substrate characteristics, alluvial topography and floodplain vegetation. The role of wood in trapping sediment and partitioning stress is well established. The removal of wood has also been recognized as a trigger for channel incision. But there is very little work regarding the influence of wood on channel bed stability, particularly with respect to the implications to salmonid redds and egg mortality. Field observations and professional judgement have led some to postulate that in-stream wood improves bed stability as it if would affect scour related to egg incubation survival. For instance, this has been coded into the widely used the Ecosystem Diagnostics and Treatment (EDT) model which increases the probability of egg to fry survival when wood is added to a channel. Yet, to date no one has developed even a basic framework to address the question of whether wood can decrease the general scour depth to which bed material is mobilized and thus impact salmonid eggs. By compiling empirical research into general bed scour and the hydraulic effects of wood, we constructed a framework describing how wood could reduce scour depth. We then proposed that stable wood integrated into the channel bed is effectively an immobile constituent of the substrate affecting the grain size distribution thereby altering dimensionless shear stress that defines the threshold for bed mobility. This provided a means to predict and compare scour depths in channels with different quantities of wood. We applied our reasoning to an incised alluvial channel segment that retains spawning gravels but sees very little salmon spawning relative to upstream and downstream river segments. Our predictions indicate that under existing conditions, general scour during a bed mobilizing event regularly exceeds typical egg burial depths of all Pacific salmon species. When we calculated the effect on bed mobility and general scour depth under a hypothetical scenario where the channel’s wood loading is at a level well within naturally occurring ranges in the PNW, the predictions show a substantial reduction in scour depths which implies an improvement in egg to fry survival. This work is also consistent with the argument that when wood increases bed substrate diversity, as well documented in the literature, it results in a greater distribution of local scour that creates patches of stable gravel that don’t occur in channels lacking wood. Our approach appears to be the first predictive tool which can be field-tested and refined to provide the restoration community with a quantitative tool for designing stable wood placements with the intent of improving spawning habitat. We are looking for additional empirical evidence of scour depths, both from previous studies and scour chains we’ve installed for water year …

2020Tim Abbe
Channel Width as a Proxy for Bed Material Transport Rate: Evidence from Morphologic Sediment Budgets

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Andrew Nelson Symposium Session: 2020 – 02 Considering sediment dynamics in river restoration design Topics covered: floodplain, hydraulics, modeling, monitoring, outside PNW, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTBed material transport rate is a first-order control over channel morphology and geomorphic processes in alluvial rivers—but reliable estimation of bed material transport rates in natural rivers remains one of the most fundamental problems in fluvial geomorphology. This limitation hampers efforts both to understand the fundamental relationship between bed material transport rate and channel morphodynamics and to sustainably manage rivers. Because of the cost, explicit accounting of bed material transport rates has been largely neglected as a part of the restoration design process. Channel classification schemes (e.g. Schumm, 1985; Church, 2006) have often shown a qualitative link between active channel width and the magnitude of bed material transport, but relatively few quantitative data are available demonstrating this relationship. We illustrate an application of the morphologic approach—a traditional approach that relies on quantification of a channel’s sediment budget—as a practical tool to examine relations between bed material sediment transport rates and channel width, braiding index, and bank erosion rates. Our focus is on two alluvial rivers in southcentral Alaska that have high, and highly spatially variable, bed material sediment transport rates. Contrasting histories and boundary controls for each system result in one being strongly degradational, resulting in an upstream-to-downstream increase in the bed material sediment transport rate, while the other is aggrading, resulting in an upstream to downstream decrease in the bed material sediment transport rate. The resulting dataset provides strong quantitative support for the notion that bed material transport intensity can be directly inferred from the width of self-formed alluvial channels. For locations along the two subject rivers—which exist in a region with similar climate, floodplain bank strength, lithology, and bed material grainsize distribution, thereby controlling many of the potentially confounding factors—channel width, which is exceptionally easy to quantify, provides a first-order indication of the bedload transport rate that is constrained to within about a factor of two. This is compelling considering typical order-of-magnitude errors common to results from relatively costly sediment transport function-based approaches to defining bedload transport. Thus, this study demonstrates proof-of-concept for an emerging approach to quantify bed material transport: measure the channel width. It should spur further data collection efforts with the aim of establishing the degree to which the observed relation is universal and—to the extent that it is not—local relations that may be used in applied …

2020Andrew Nelson
Restoration of Incised Streams: Recognizing gravel as a limited resource using a simple metric…

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Nick Legg Symposium Session: 2020 – 02 Considering sediment dynamics in river restoration design Topics covered: fish passage, fish-salmon, floodplain, hydraulics, lessons learned, monitoring, riparian, sediment transport, and stream ABSTRACTRestoration of incised alluvial streams is a common yet still challenging problem faced throughout the Pacific Northwest, where the negative effects of stream incision range from disconnected floodplains, armored streambeds, lowered water tables, and degraded riparian communities. A fundamental question in these efforts is whether passive restoration is a viable approach to meeting management objectives on required timescales (e.g. salmonid recovery prior to extinction or extirpation). In other words, can we reasonably wait for streams to build their beds back up to a point of reestablished connectivity and floodplain function? The timescales of potential recovery are directly informed by the metric D* [years], which we define as the volume deficit (D) of sediment lost through historical stream incision, divided by the annual rate of bedload sediment supply (S) to a reach. Through examination of regional patterns in D*, we find that bedload supply rates are often quite low relative to the sediment volume lost via historic stream incision. This suggests that potential timescales of recovery are on the order of multiple decades to centuries. This presentation will highlight application of this simple metric to inform restoration strategies, especially those that recognize gravel and bedload as a scarce …

2020Nick Legg
Application of stream heat budget modelling to assess thermal mitigation options – case study

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: David West Symposium Session: 2020 – 01 Protecting critical flows Topics covered: Canada, climate change, fish passage, floodplain, hydraulics, modeling, and stream ABSTRACTStream temperatures have been rising in many streams of the Pacific Northwest due to land use and flow regime alterations and climate change. Fish species such as salmonids have narrow thermal tolerances that, when exceeded, can cause severe health impacts, prevent spawning, or cause mortality. Stream thermal regimes are governed by a variety of heat fluxes that are influenced by riparian vegetation characteristics, flow regime, channel morphology, and climate. Some of these fluxes can be modified by watershed managers through shade enhancement and flow regime modification. Determining the cost-benefit of modifying these processes requires high accuracy predictions of the expected outcomes. Additionally, trade-offs can exist between providing ideal flow rate and maintaining ideal temperature in lake-headed systems. Stream heat budget models have been applied around the world to assess thermal management questions for decades; however, the available data and heat flux characterization methods have been continuously evolving, resulting in the ability to accurately predict the effects of management interventions at lower cost. The purpose of this talk will be to describe the modelling process required to assess thermal management approaches using a case study from the Okanagan region of British Columbia. Ecofish Research Ltd. and the BC Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resources Operations and Rural Development (MFLNRORD) were awarded a grant by the Habitat Conservation Trust Fund (HCTF) to develop a model for a small regulated stream with multiple online lakes that supports resident Rainbow Trout and critical spawning habitat for Kokanee. The model was used to assess the potential thermal regime improvements that could be achieved with enhanced riparian vegetation, and to determine the maximum flow rate before temperatures exceed Kokanee spawning thresholds. The model was also used to predict the effects of climate change due to changes in air temperature and solar radiation. The stream temperature model that was configured is an upgraded version of the heat budget model that has been developed over the past decade by Ecofish and various researchers at the University of British Columbia. The model applies an unsteady Lagrangian flow routing algorithm. Surface heat fluxes include direct and diffuse solar (shortwave) radiation, longwave radiation to and from the stream, sensible heat flux, and latent heat exchange (evaporation and condensation). The advective heat fluxes include inflows, hyporheic exchange, and streambed heat conduction. Each of the fluxes was measured in the field or calculated with public data sources. The effects of climate change included maximum water temperature increases that approached 5oC for RCP4.5 and exceeded 8oC for RCP8.5 climate change scenarios. An ideal flow release during the Kokanee spawning period was identified that was slightly lower than the current standard release. Enhancing vegetation was also shown to provide strong benefits with a potential 4oC temperature reduction if all banks were planted with similar density to that of the top 50% of measured locations. This case study highlights the benefits of stream temperature models in quantifying the potential effects of flow and shade management …

2020David West
Passive restoration through flow augmentation: the lower North Fork Skokomish River

Year: 2020 Presenter/s: Florian Leischner Symposium Session: 2020 – 01 Protecting critical flows Topics covered: fish passage, fish-cutthroat, fish-salmon, fish-steelhead, hydraulics, instream structure (culvert/bridge/dam), lessons learned, monitoring, and stream ABSTRACTacoma Power completed construction of the Cushman Hydroelectric Project on the Olympic Peninsula in 1930. The Project includes two dams, two powerhouses, and associated facilities on the North Fork of the Skokomish River, which drains into Hood Canal. The Project first impounds water in Lake Cushman, a 4010-acre reservoir downstream of Staircase Falls, and then conveys it by way of the Cushman No 1. dam to the smaller (150-acre) Lake Kokanee, impounded by Cushman Dam #2. From Lake Kokanee, Tacoma Power either diverts water through a tunnel to a second powerhouse on Hood Canal, or releases it to the lower reaches of the North Fork Skokomish River. Historically, Tacoma Power diverted nearly all of the flow from Lake Kokanee to the powerhouse on Hood Canal, disconnecting the lower North Fork from the basin hydrology. Base flow was less than 100 cfs year-round, with minimal planned variability and large flows (greater than 1,000 cfs) largely limited to one spill event per year (on average). This was in sharp contrast to the average annual inflow of 519 cfs entering the system from the upper North Fork, with peak flows of up to 27,000 cfs. Tacoma Power maintained this hydrology for over 70 years. In combination with disconnected wood and sediment input, this flow alteration reduced the quantity of in-stream habitat in the lower North Fork through both reduced inundation and habitat simplification. Tacoma Power received its new federal operating license for the Cushman Project in 2010. Much of the controversy during the relicensing proceeding concerned the amount of flow diverted from the river. Since relicensing, Tacoma Power has increased its base flow to 120 to 300 cfs, and has incorporated additional temporary releases of up to 1,050 cfs in response to winter storm events to create and maintain in-stream habitat below the Cushman No. 2 dam. One of the desired outcomes of flow augmentation is to support passive restoration of in-stream habitat in this reach for the benefit of fish populations, including the three stocks listed under the ESA: Puget Sound Chinook, Bull Trout, and Winter Steelhead. Since 2012, Tacoma Power has been conducting intensive annual stream and salmon monitoring in the lower North Fork to evaluate the effectiveness of flow augmentation on habitat quantity and quality. It has been measuring the hydromorphological effects as well as the response in habitat and fish to the increase in discharges. This paper will present some preliminary results, specifically channel and habitat …

2020Florian Leischner

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