Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program
RSS Feed for updates to Project 2012-015-00 - Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program Follow this via RSS feed. Help setting up RSS feeds?

Project Summary

Project 2012-015-00 - Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program
Project Number:
2012-015-00
Title:
Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program
Summary:
The Cowlitz Indian Tribe works with Bonneville Power Administration and her partners to identify, develop and implement salmonid habitat restoration projects on the Lower Columbia River from Bonneville Dam to the Plume of the Columbia River, all located within the Cowlitz Tribe's Historical Area of Interest. One of these projects identified and developed through the Estuary process is a 232 acre floodplain project which occurs at the confluence of the Walooski River and Young's Bay near Astoria Oregon.

The Walluski-Youngs Confluence restoration project is sponsored by the Cowlitz Indian Tribe. The site has been purchased by Astoria Wetlands, LLC which will fund the site’s restoration design, permitting, and construction; the land’s title will be conveyed to the Tribe. The Tribe will provide perpetual stewardship of the site, manage the area, and provide access to the site for the Cowlitz and other Tribes’ cultural activities.

The project will restore tidal processes, a functioning tidal marsh system, and fish access to the historically estuarine portion of the site: 164.50 acres of isolated floodplain habitat. This site is characterized by an extensive dike along the perimeter that isolates the area and prevents daily tidal interaction with historical floodplain habitat that is now drained pasture land. The dike, which is privately owned and operated, is poorly constructed of unconsolidated materials and is eroding in extensive areas. Breaching the dike and further weakening it in selected areas will immediately restore tidal hydrology and, through time, promote more connectivity with the bay as the dike continues to erode.

Project Goals
The Walluski-Youngs Confluence project will restore and preserve 232 acres of estuary and upland areas in Youngs Bay to provide habitat and promote conservation. The project will meet these goals by increasing habitat diversity and complexity for juvenile salmonids at the site and improving connectivity to nearby restoration sites with Youngs Bay and the Youngs and Walluski River drainages by restoring access and tidal hydrology to the floodplain wetland, as well as current and new tidal channel networks. The project will enhance riparian/floodplain and upland habitats and site connectivity by restoring native plant communities and controlling non-native invasive species.
The Walluski-Youngs Confluence project will meet the Cowlitz Indian Tribe’s Natural Resources Department's goals of restoring and conserving landscapes and species integral to the cultural identity of the Cowlitz People. This project will restore critical habitat for salmonids and will also serve as important habitat for migrating waterfowl, deer and elk, and native plant communities that are culturally significant to the Tribe.

What this contract sets out to perform, in this first iteration, is to facilitate, develop and come into compliance with the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) authority to modify (in this case breach in several locations) a levee under the authority of USACE. This process is known as Section 408 Compliance. Section 408 is an intensive process that requires several steps and independent review to ensure that infrastructure and human safety drive the design process of any modifications to USACE authorized levees. This project will fund the design steps, review, coordination and technical assessments necessary to bring the Walluski-Young's Confluence Project into compliance with USACE Section 408 rules.
Proposer:
Proponent Orgs:
Cowlitz Indian Tribe (Tribe)
Starting FY:
2012
Ending FY:
2024
BPA PM:
Stage:
Implementation - Project Status Report
Area:
Province Subbasin %
Columbia River Estuary Cowlitz 100.00%
Purpose:
Habitat
Emphasis:
Restoration/Protection
Focal Species:
Chinook - All Populations
Chinook - Lower Columbia River ESU
Chum - Columbia River ESU
Coho - Lower Columbia River ESU
Coho - Unspecified Population
Sockeye - All Populations
Steelhead - All Populations
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 100.0%   Resident: 0.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
Special:
None

No photos have been uploaded yet for this Project.

Summary of Budgets

To view all expenditures for all fiscal years, click "Project Exp. by FY"

To see more detailed project budget information, please visit the "Project Budget" page

Decided Budget Transfers  (FY2023 - FY2025)

Acct FY Acct Type Amount Fund Budget Decision Date
FY2023 Expense $45,000 From: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) FY23 SOY Budget Upload 06/01/2022
FY2024 Expense $45,000 From: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) FY24 SOY Budget Upload 06/01/2023

Pending Budget Decision?  No


Actual Project Cost Share

Current Fiscal Year — 2024
Cost Share Partner Total Proposed Contribution Total Confirmed Contribution
There are no project cost share contributions to show.
Previous Fiscal Years
Fiscal Year Total Contributions % of Budget
There are no cost share summaries to display from previous years.

Contracts

The table below contains contracts with the following statuses: Active, Closed, Complete, History, Issued.
* "Total Contracted Amount" column includes contracted amount from both capital and expense components of the contract.
Expense Contracts:
Number Contractor Name Title Status Total Contracted Amount Dates
CR-363027 SOW 2012-015-00 EXP WALLOOSKEE YOUNG'S TBL LINE UPGRADE Pending $0
BPA-007225 Bonneville Power Administration FY12 Internal SOW Active $0 10/1/2011 - 9/30/2012
BPA-006870 Bonneville Power Administration Youngs/Walluski direct SBU Active $20,629 10/1/2012 - 9/30/2013
59092 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ INDIAN TRIBE ESTUARY R Closed $307,995 11/1/2012 - 1/31/2014
62692 SOW Falling Springs, LLC 2012-015-00 EXP WALLOOSKEE/YOUNGS RESTORATION Closed $7,245,161 9/1/2013 - 9/30/2017
BPA-007586 Bonneville Power Administration Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary R. Active $14,726 10/1/2013 - 9/30/2014
63666 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ INDIAN TRIBE ESTUARY Closed $355,548 1/1/2014 - 12/31/2014
63791 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP WALLOOSKEE YOUNGS 408 PERMIT-FY14 Closed $86,419 2/1/2014 - 1/31/2015
BPA-008240 Bonneville Power Administration TBL Work Active $12,765 10/1/2014 - 9/30/2015
67636 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ INDIAN TRIBE ESTUARY R Closed $522,850 1/1/2015 - 12/31/2015
BPA-008793 Bonneville Power Administration FY16 TBL Realty Services / Land Acquisition Active $318,555 10/1/2015 - 9/30/2016
71344 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP CIT ESTUARY RESTORATION Closed $474,568 1/1/2016 - 12/31/2016
BPA-009462 Bonneville Power Administration FY17 Land Acquisitions & TBL Task Orders Active $179 10/1/2016 - 9/30/2017
74753 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ INDIAN TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION Closed $478,081 1/1/2017 - 12/31/2017
78135 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ INTIAN TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION (CIT) Closed $423,779 1/1/2018 - 12/31/2018
81489 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ ESTUARY RESTORATION (CIT) Closed $87,584 3/1/2019 - 5/31/2020
85394 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ ESTUARY RESTORATION - THE SHIRE (CIT) Closed $45,000 6/1/2020 - 5/31/2021
88046 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION - THE SHIRE Closed $45,000 6/1/2021 - 5/31/2022
90421 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION - THE SHIRE Closed $45,000 6/1/2022 - 5/31/2023
92566 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION - THE SHIRE Issued $45,000 6/1/2023 - 5/31/2024
CR-369532 SOW Cowlitz Indian Tribe 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION - THE SHIRE Pending $45,000 9/1/2024 - 8/31/2025



Annual Progress Reports
Expected (since FY2004):14
Completed:11
On time:11
Status Reports
Completed:52
On time:19
Avg Days Late:19

                Count of Contract Deliverables
Earliest Contract Subsequent Contracts Title Contractor Earliest Start Latest End Latest Status Accepted Reports Complete Green Yellow Red Total % Green and Complete Canceled
BPA-6870 Youngs/Walluski direct SBU Bonneville Power Administration 10/01/2012 09/30/2013 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
59092 63666, 63791, 67636, 71344, 74753, 78135, 81489, 85394, 88046, 90421, 92566, CR-369532 2012-015-00 EXP COWLITZ TRIBE ESTUARY RESTORATION - THE SHIRE Cowlitz Indian Tribe 11/01/2012 08/31/2025 Pending 46 63 4 0 6 73 91.78% 2
62692 CR-333135 2010-073-00 EXP SVENSEN ISLAND DSBU RESTORATION Falling Springs, LLC 09/01/2013 12/31/2025 Pending 6 4 0 0 0 4 100.00% 0
BPA-7586 Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary R. Bonneville Power Administration 10/01/2013 09/30/2014 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
BPA-8240 TBL Work Bonneville Power Administration 10/01/2014 09/30/2015 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
BPA-8793 FY16 TBL Realty Services / Land Acquisition Bonneville Power Administration 10/01/2015 09/30/2016 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
BPA-9462 FY17 Land Acquisitions & TBL Task Orders Bonneville Power Administration 10/01/2016 09/30/2017 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Project Totals 52 67 4 0 6 77 92.21% 2


The table content is updated frequently and thus contains more recent information than what was in the original proposal reviewed by ISRP and Council.

Review: 2022 Anadromous Fish Habitat & Hatchery Review

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2012-015-00-NPCC-20230310
Project: 2012-015-00 - Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program
Review: 2022 Anadromous Fish Habitat & Hatchery Review
Approved Date: 4/15/2022
Recommendation: Implement with Conditions
Comments: Bonneville and Sponsor to address condition #1 (restoration actions) and #2 (benefits) in future project documentation.

[Background: See https://www.nwcouncil.org/2021-2022-anadromous-habitat-and-hatchery-review/]

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2012-015-00-ISRP-20230308
Project: 2012-015-00 - Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program
Review: 2022 Anadromous Fish Habitat & Hatchery Review
Completed Date: 3/14/2023
Final Round ISRP Date: 2/10/2022
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
Final Round ISRP Comment:

The ISRP appreciates the proponent’s response, including Appendix E, which provides considerable new information but raises some additional concerns and questions. Because the project is applying for permits in 2022 (page 11, Preliminary Design Report), the ISRP recommends the following conditions be addressed by the proponents in the form of a response letter to the ISRP by June 1, 2022:

  1. Clarify the proposed restoration actions. The ISRP is unclear about how the multiple actions collectively will accomplish the objectives. We remain concerned that some actions might conflict with or reduce benefits of other actions. See Topic 1 below.
  2. Expected benefits. Clarify the expected outcomes or benefits of the project in terms of species, sizes, and populations of fish that would access this site during the critical periods identified in the proposal. See Topic 2 below.
  3. Construction monitoring plan. Provide a plan for how the project construction will be monitored and describe expected issues that may arise and how these will be addressed. The ISRP believes improvement to the project evaluation and adjustment process is essential for success. See Topic 4 below.

Details on the conditions are provided below.

In our preliminary review, we requested a response on the topics listed below in the form of a revised proposal and detailed responses. Our comments based on the proponents’ responses are provided after each topic:

  1. Restoration actions (Condition 1). Despite additional details provided in Appendix E, the ISRP is still unclear about some elements of this project. Some design elements appear to conflict with others. Overall, we strongly urge that the proponents refocus the expected benefits of this project on access by juvenile salmon. If this is successful, the proponents could enhance adult salmon access at a later date. We note that no adults have been found in the wetland/creek complex, but the complex is used by juveniles. The ISRP requests that the proponents provide clarification on the issues listed below.
    1. We are unclear how the project can lower the entrance to provide increased access but then also raise the crest by two feet to hold water. These two actions seem to conflict.
    2. It was not clear if and how the East Fork, which has considerable potential habitat would be improved by all these actions. It seems to dewater in the late summer and autumn under current conditions and results in stranding fish. How would this project not increase stranding in the East Fork by raising the crest?
    3. We are concerned that anchoring large wood is not consistent with the ecological dynamics of wood over the long term, given the consistent tidal action in this portion of the river. Will the portion of the wood on site that is anchored by cable be able to persist during prolonged inundation without breaking apart because of buoyant forces? In addition, would the anchored wood installed at the mouth to retain spawning gravels potentially accumulate so much other wood such that access by juveniles could be blocked?
    4. We are uncertain if sediment placed in the lower section adjacent to the main Columbia River channel to encourage adult spawning would remain in place. Will this sediment not be scoured away during winter high flows? If sediment exchange currently is inadequate to create spawning substrates, how frequently will the sediment need to be augmented from off-site sources to provide spawning habitat? 

  2. Expected outcomes (Condition 2). The ISRP is still confused about what outcomes the proponents expect, and the ISRP requests these be clarified.
    1. The overall intent of this project is to provide cold-water refuges for mostly juvenile salmon. As the ISRP understands it, the main goal is to provide fish access to the site rather than provide a cold-water refuge adjacent to the mouth of the creek. Juveniles were found within the site on a number of surveys, but the absence of spawning habitat suggests the juveniles migrate in from the main river as opposed to being spawned in Yeon Creek. We noted that some data on fish (date, species) in the Shire habitats are available and we request that proponents provide this in a table showing date, location in the Shire, species, approximate sizes and estimated numbers.
    2. The focus of the project is to provide cold water refuge for salmon during the August to October timeframe. While there is the potential for both juveniles and adults to access this site, we are unclear which species and size classes of salmon would potentially access this habitat. We ask that proponents thoroughly describe expected benefits, especially what species and size classes would access the restored habitat during August to October. There are various publications that can be used to develop such predictions (e.g., Fish Passage Center Reports for Bonneville Dam; Teel et al. 2009 TAFS Volume 138; Teel et al. 2014 NAJFM, Volume 34; Johnson et al. 2015 CJFAS, Volume 72; Sather et al., 2016 TAFS, Volume 145; Bottom et al. 2005). 

  3. Selection process. The ISRP understands that this is a project of opportunity where the proponents are familiar with the site and the owner, as opposed to one based on a strategic approach. The ISRP is encouraged that the proponents are trying to shift to a selection approach for future projects based on a clear strategy. 

  4. Collaboration and project evaluation (Condition 3). The proponents provided descriptions of some past funding processes for this project: Lower Columbia Recovery Board, Salmon Recovery Funding Board, WDFW, USCOE, and ERTG. Nonetheless, the ISRP still finds the project evaluation and adjustment process to be inadequate. Given the uncertainty in design elements of this project and expected benefits, the ISRP requests that the proponents provide a plan for how the project construction will be monitored, as well as describe expected issues that may arise and how these will be addressed. We believe a more explicit project evaluation and adjustment process is essential for success.
    We note that the proponents are still using what appears to be the LCEP description to characterize monitoring of this project. As we have observed in our responses above, this is not a typical lower river restoration project, given the uncertainties in design, construction, and expected benefits. The proponents are encouraged to seek support for monitoring the construction phase of this project so that any issues that arise can be identified and addressed. 

  5. Summary of past projects. The ISRP appreciates the summary of past projects and the table, Appendix B, that was provided in the response.

M&E matrix - support. The M&E summary and matrix are included in the Estuary Monitoring proposal (200300700). The map and updated tables were also provided to the partners – CREST, CLT, CIT, and WDFW – for inclusion in their responses to the ISRP. As the NPCC Fish and Wildlife Program develops efforts to identify monitoring activities and coordination between projects in major subbasins, the ISRP encourages this project to contribute its expertise and resources to help create an effective summary for the lower Columbia River. The ISRP has provided additional information on the summary of monitoring and evaluation for geographic areas in the Programmatic Comments of this report. In addition to providing important information for the Fish and Wildlife Program, development of an overall summary of the M&E efforts in the lower Columbia River also would inform and strengthen the restoration efforts of this project.

Preliminary ISRP report comments: response requested

Response request comment:

The ISRP requests the proponents to address the following points in a revised proposal and to provide a brief point-by-point response to explain how and where each issue is addressed in the revised proposal:

  1. Restoration actions. Provide details about the construction process at The Shire. The ISRP is concerned that the project appears to involve the removal of a bedrock sill. This can have unforeseen consequences in how water moves into and out of the project site. Please clarify exactly what geomorphic changes are proposed.
  2. Expected outcomes. Provide details about the expected biophysical outcomes of restoration actions at The Shire, including but not limited to the volume of cool water being discharged, the distance it might extend from shore, the months it might be used by the fish, and the potential number of adult and juvenile salmon using the site.
  3. Selection process. Provide details about how new projects are selected (e.g., what process was used to select The Shire project).
  4. Collaboration and project evaluation. Provide evidence that the proponents and the other programs are cooperating in meaningful ways, especially for AEM and adaptive management. Also, provide a project evaluation and adjustment process for The Shire project and not for CEERP, which is what is provided in the proposal.
  5. Summary of past projects. The proponents have completed or contributed to 30 projects. There are details provided on the previous projects and the addition of a summary table for those projects, outcomes, funding source, year completed, and monitoring would be helpful to the ISRP.
  6. M&E matrix - support. As habitat projects and monitoring projects are not presented as part of an integrated proposal or plan, the need for a matrix to identify the linkages between implementation and monitoring is extremely important for basins or geographic areas. The ISRP is requesting a response from the Columbia River Estuary Ecosystem Monitoring Project (200300700) to summarize the linkages between implementation and monitoring projects in the Lower Columbia geographic area. We ask this project to assist them in creating the summary and provide information about what is being monitored for this implementation project and where and when the monitoring occurs. A map or maps of locations of monitoring actions would be helpful in this regard.

Q1: Clearly defined objectives and outcomes

This is basically a proposal to complete one project — The Shire on University of Oregon land in Washington. The objective is quantitative with an outcome that appears promising. However, the proponents need to provide more details about the expected outcomes. For instance, the volume of cool water being discharged, the potential number of adult salmon using the site, the months that it will be ecologically useful, and other key aspects should be specified. The ISRP appreciates seeing reasonable implementation objectives and subobjectives. These could be expanded and made more complete, however. For example, some timelines would be helpful for the sub-objectives, and the proposal would benefit from some specific biological and physical objectives.

Q2: Methods

Methods (or details) are not provided about the construction process at The Shire. ISRP appreciates that the proponents address progress from previous projects in the appendices, many of which appear to have been successful in terms of acreage and physical restoration. The proponents also discuss why some projects have not been successful, and this too was helpful, as the reasons provided are legitimate.

The Objectives include a very specific set of activities and timelines, which might better be placed in the Methods. The Methods section largely describes the process of project selection and prioritization, and links to CEERP's overall strategy, rather than stating what will actually be done on the ground. There were no details on what monitoring was expected or what those methods would be.

Q3: Provisions for M&E

The proponents indicate that others (LCEP) will do the monitoring and be responsible for an Adaptive Management process. Overall, ISRP is concerned that the process to ensure that the proponents and the other programs will cooperate in meaningful ways is too vague. 

There is a clear description of the adaptive management process. However, a similarly detailed and clear description of how this project (i.e., access to Yeon Spring at The Shire by sill removal, channel opening, installation of habitat-forming structures, wetland plantings, and removal of non-native vegetation) will be assessed and modified (if necessary) would have been helpful. How will the specific activities be adjusted as the project progresses? If something is not working at the ground-level, how will issues be identified and rectified?

While The Shire site seems like a location where there may be benefits for fish, how was it chosen? Are there alternative sites under consideration? What criteria were used for selecting The Shire? Providing more about the selection process would have been informative.

Q4: Results – benefits to fish and wildlife

The primary benefit of this project will be access for adult and juvenile salmon to cool water. If the volume of cool water is adequate, then this project could have significant benefits to fish migrating at times when the main river is warm. This project will help address one type of an ongoing and future climate change issue (water temperature) in the Columbia Estuary.

Few would dispute the delivery of cool water as important, but it would be helpful to have more detail on the proximity of the site to sources of naturally-produced salmonids, species and life history forms that might use the spring, timing patterns, possible use by holding adults, and ways by which fish use might be monitored.

Documentation Links:
Review: 2013 Geographic Category Review

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2012-015-00-NPCC-20131126
Project: 2012-015-00 - Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program
Review: 2013 Geographic Category Review
Proposal: GEOREV-2012-015-00
Proposal State: Pending BPA Response
Approved Date: 11/5/2013
Recommendation: Implement with Conditions
Comments: New BiOp project. Implement with conditions through 2018: See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation D for monitoring in the estuary.
Conditions:
Council Condition #1 ISRP Qualification: Qualification #1—See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation D for monitoring in the estuary.
Council Condition #2 ISRP Qualification: Qualification #2—See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation D for monitoring in the estuary.
Council Condition #3 Programmatic Issue: D. Columbia River Estuary – effectiveness monitoring—See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation D for monitoring in the estuary.

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2012-015-00-ISRP-20130610
Project: 2012-015-00 - Cowlitz Indian Tribe Estuary Restoration Program
Review: 2013 Geographic Category Review
Proposal Number: GEOREV-2012-015-00
Completed Date: 6/11/2013
Final Round ISRP Date: 6/10/2013
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
Final Round ISRP Comment:

1. Purpose: Significance to Regional Programs, Technical Background, and Objectives

The program is very significant because extensive areas are sought for habitat restoration; 13 ESUs and several RPAs in the 2008 BiOp are addressed.

The sponsors are mainly relying on the LCREP Science Work Group for technical background, although they are also involving graduate students. In general, not a lot of specific technical background is given for the projects. Specific restoration sites are to be chosen with input from expert panels. Much of the narrative is from other planning documents dealing with the estuary (Johnson et al. 2012) which seems to be appropriate as the project is being conducted under an umbrella type project with five other lead agents. Specific detail on how the primary elements of the Johnson (2012) document were incorporated into the design of the program would have been useful.

The project objective is the same one used by other umbrella projects, "Protect and restore the lower Columbia River Ecosystem focusing on habitat opportunity, capacity, and realized function for aquatic organisms." As stated this is a goal and to refine to objectives should answer questions such as: Protect how and where? How much capacity? Which functions for which stocks or species?

2. History: Accomplishments, Results, and Adaptive Management (Evaluation of Results)

The project has been in existence for just five months, so there are no project-specific accomplishments as of yet. However, during the past ten years the CIT has helped identify, and implement eleven habitat restoration projects. Therefore, the sponsors have experience performing habitat restoration work in the lower Columbia River. Additionally, the CIT states that it is committed to using utilizing new information to inform its current and new projects using the tribe’s adaptive management guidelines.

3. Project Relationships, Emerging Limiting Factors, and Tailored Questions

Project relationships are well-described and the sponsors have obviously reached out to a network of collaborators. Involvement of community and recognition of tribal values shows a true landscape approach is being taken.

Climate change was recognized as a future limiting factor, but the potential effects of climate change, for example, low dissolved oxygen of coastal waters due to prolonged upwelling, ocean acidification, increases in storm intensities and frequencies were not mentioned. Additionally, potential interactions between contaminants and restoration action were not considered. The sponsors state that restoration of normative processes in project areas will help to ameliorate the impacts of climate change.

4. Deliverables, Work Elements, Metrics, and Methods

The project has three deliverables: 1) Identify and prioritize habitat protection and restoration actions in the lower Columbia River and its estuary, 2) Design, permit, construct, and manage restoration actions, and 3) Monitor the success and effectiveness of its restoration actions for adaptive management. Some clarification on how these deliverables will be achieved is needed. First, it appears that CIT staff will identify project sites and these will be reviewed and prioritized by the Estuary Partnership. Selected projects will go through a cycle of analysis, design, permitting etc. that will be done by CIT staff and their consultants. Then apparently the projects go through the Estuary Partnership selection process for potential funding? Second, if funded CIT staff will be responsible for final designs, construction, permitting, and project management. However, funds from the Estuary Partnership will be used to perform the restoration work. And third, CIT staff will be responsible for AEMR after project completion. Is this the actual process that the CIT anticipates will be used?

The methods used for project prioritization, selection, and AEMR are those previously established by the Estuary Partnership and are generally adequate. Additional detail on the definition and weighting of main and sub elements of this prioritization is needed.

Specific comments on protocols and methods described in MonitoringMethods.org

Protocols and methods for estuary sampling and monitoring are appropriate for the project following Roegner et al. 2009 in MonitoringMethods.org. No metrics are described.


===========QUALIFICATIONS FOLLOW================

The ISRP’s issues can be dealt with in contracting and future project reviews.

Qualification #1 - Qualification #1
See the programmatic comment for the estuary and the response request for LCREP. Continued work on justifying prioritization, coordinating RME, and reporting results at the programmatic level is recommended.
Qualification #2 - Qualification #2
The proposal needs clarifications of how this project will accomplish its objectives and interact with the Estuary Partnership. Details regarding the site selection process should also be included along with descriptions of habitat restoration actions. If this has not been completed, then the ISRP should/could review in the future after the selections have been made.
First Round ISRP Date: 6/10/2013
First Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
First Round ISRP Comment:

1. Purpose: Significance to Regional Programs, Technical Background, and Objectives

The program is very significant because extensive areas are sought for habitat restoration; 13 ESUs and several RPAs in the 2008 BiOp are addressed.

The sponsors are mainly relying on the LCREP Science Work Group for technical background, although they are also involving graduate students. In general, not a lot of specific technical background is given for the projects. Specific restoration sites are to be chosen with input from expert panels. Much of the narrative is from other planning documents dealing with the estuary (Johnson et al. 2012) which seems to be appropriate as the project is being conducted under an umbrella type project with five other lead agents. Specific detail on how the primary elements of the Johnson (2012) document were incorporated into the design of the program would have been useful.

The project objective is the same one used by other umbrella projects, "Protect and restore the lower Columbia River Ecosystem focusing on habitat opportunity, capacity, and realized function for aquatic organisms." As stated this is a goal and to refine to objectives should answer questions such as: Protect how and where? How much capacity? Which functions for which stocks or species?

2. History: Accomplishments, Results, and Adaptive Management (Evaluation of Results)

The project has been in existence for just five months, so there are no project-specific accomplishments as of yet. However, during the past ten years the CIT has helped identify, and implement eleven habitat restoration projects. Therefore, the sponsors have experience performing habitat restoration work in the lower Columbia River. Additionally, the CIT states that it is committed to using utilizing new information to inform its current and new projects using the tribe’s adaptive management guidelines.

3. Project Relationships, Emerging Limiting Factors, and Tailored Questions

Project relationships are well-described and the sponsors have obviously reached out to a network of collaborators. Involvement of community and recognition of tribal values shows a true landscape approach is being taken.

Climate change was recognized as a future limiting factor, but the potential effects of climate change, for example, low dissolved oxygen of coastal waters due to prolonged upwelling, ocean acidification, increases in storm intensities and frequencies were not mentioned. Additionally, potential interactions between contaminants and restoration action were not considered. The sponsors state that restoration of normative processes in project areas will help to ameliorate the impacts of climate change.

4. Deliverables, Work Elements, Metrics, and Methods

The project has three deliverables: 1) Identify and prioritize habitat protection and restoration actions in the lower Columbia River and its estuary, 2) Design, permit, construct, and manage restoration actions, and 3) Monitor the success and effectiveness of its restoration actions for adaptive management. Some clarification on how these deliverables will be achieved is needed. First, it appears that CIT staff will identify project sites and these will be reviewed and prioritized by the Estuary Partnership. Selected projects will go through a cycle of analysis, design, permitting etc. that will be done by CIT staff and their consultants. Then apparently the projects go through the Estuary Partnership selection process for potential funding? Second, if funded CIT staff will be responsible for final designs, construction, permitting, and project management. However, funds from the Estuary Partnership will be used to perform the restoration work. And third, CIT staff will be responsible for AEMR after project completion. Is this the actual process that the CIT anticipates will be used?

The methods used for project prioritization, selection, and AEMR are those previously established by the Estuary Partnership and are generally adequate. Additional detail on the definition and weighting of main and sub elements of this prioritization is needed.

Specific comments on protocols and methods described in MonitoringMethods.org

Protocols and methods for estuary sampling and monitoring are appropriate for the project following Roegner et al. 2009 in MonitoringMethods.org. No metrics are described.


===========QUALIFICATIONS FOLLOW================

The ISRP’s issues can be dealt with in contracting and future project reviews.

Modified by Dal Marsters on 6/11/2013 3:37:28 PM.
Documentation Links:

Project Relationships: None

Name Role Organization
Jason Karnezis Project Manager Bonneville Power Administration
Peter Barber Project Lead Cowlitz Indian Tribe
Kristina Eilts (Inactive) Env. Compliance Lead Bonneville Power Administration