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Project Summary

Project 2017-005-00 - Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative
Project Number:
2017-005-00
Title:
Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative
Summary:
The purpose of this umbrella proposal is to facilitate funding for high priority lamprey restoration actions and M&E that are currently unfunded or partially funded in the Columbia River RMUs. This process will work in parallel with other programs that are funding lamprey restoration and M&E (e.g., USACE Anadromous Fish Evaluation Program, Fish Accords, Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s Fish and Wildlife Program).
Proposer:
Proponent Orgs:
Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission (Govt - State)
US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) (Govt - Federal)
Bonneville Power Administration (Govt - Federal)
Starting FY:
2018
Ending FY:
2021
Stage:
Implementation - Project Status Report
Area:
Province Subbasin %
Basinwide - 100.00%
Purpose:
Programmatic
Emphasis:
RM and E
Focal Species:
Chinook - All Populations
Cutthroat Trout, Coastal - All Anadromous Populations
Lamprey, Pacific
Lamprey, River
Lamprey, Western Brook
Trout, Bull
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 100.0%   Resident: 0.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
Special:
None
BiOp Association:
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  (FY2019 - FY2021)

Acct FY Acct Type Amount Fund Budget Decision Date
FY2019 Expense $238,692 From: Cost Savings 2017-005-00 04/18/2019
FY2020 Expense $300,000 From: Cost Savings FY20 SOY 06/05/2019
FY2021 Expense $300,000 From: General FY21 SOY 06/09/2020

Pending Budget Decision?  No


Actual Project Cost Share

Current Fiscal Year — 2020
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
2019 (Draft)
2018

Contracts

The table below contains contracts with the following statuses: Active, 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
78040 REL 15 SOW Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission 2017-005-00 EXP PACIFIC LAMPREY CONSERVATION INITIATIVE CRB PROJS Issued $238,692 6/1/2019 - 7/31/2021
78040 REL 27 SOW Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission 2017-005-00 EXP PACIFIC LAMPREY CONSERVATION INITIATIVE CRB PROJS Issued $120,052 6/1/2020 - 5/31/2021
85347 SOW US Geological Survey (USGS) 2017-005-00 EXP PLCI CRB PROJS ACOUSTC TELEM AND LARVAL SALV USGS Issued $129,100 6/1/2020 - 12/31/2021



Annual Progress Reports
Expected (since FY2004):6
Completed:1
On time:1
Status Reports
Completed:8
On time:4
Avg Days Late:0

Earliest Subsequent           Accepted Count of Contract Deliverables
Contract Contract(s) Title Contractor Start End Status Reports Complete Green Yellow Red Total % Green and Complete Canceled
78040 REL 4 78040 REL 15, 78040 REL 27 2017-005-00 EXP PACIFIC LAMPREY CONSERVATION INITIATIVE CRB PROJS Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission 06/2018 06/2018 Issued 8 12 9 0 12 33 63.64% 0
85347 2017-005-00 EXP PLCI CRB PROJS ACOUSTC TELEM AND LARVAL SALV USGS US Geological Survey (USGS) 06/2020 06/2020 Issued 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Project Totals 8 12 9 0 12 33 63.64% 0


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: 2019-2021 Mainstem/Program Support

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2017-005-00-ISRP-20190404
Project: 2017-005-00 - Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative
Review: 2019-2021 Mainstem/Program Support
Proposal Number: NPCC19-2017-005-00
Completed Date: None
First Round ISRP Date: 4/4/2019
First Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
First Round ISRP Comment:

Qualifications:

The ISRP recommends that the proponents describe their responses to the ISRP's comments and suggestions below in their upcoming annual report covering FY 2019 accomplishments.

1.      Objective #1 in the proposal is to evaluate population structure, yet none of the 13 deliverables address objective #1. The ISRP believes this is a key objective, as there is uncertainty about how local adaptation in fitness traits may be jeopardized by translocation efforts. Consequently, we ask the proponents to describe how ongoing project activities will be used to elucidate regional population structure and the spatial scale of adaptions in Pacific lamprey.

2.      Explain how the Strategic Habitat Conservation (SHC) approach, described in the Adaptive Management section of the proposal, could be applied to individual Regional Management Unit (RMU) projects. The ISRP suggests that critical requirements of an adaptive management process are needed at the project level. A first step in any adaptive management approach is the formulation of quantitative and time explicit objectives. A section in each project proposal should be dedicated to listing these objectives. Additionally, each proposal should include an explanation of how project implementation and effectiveness will be evaluated. Combining quantitative objectives with appropriate monitoring and evaluation is an essential feature of adaptive management that should be strengthened at the project level.

3.      Strengthen processes to reduce conflicts of interest and ensure the scientific objectivity of the Conservation Team during the proposal review process. Research and assessment projects selected for funding through this proposal should also be reviewed individually by the ISRP to ensure sound study designs and to alleviate concerns about potential conflicts of interest.

4.      Provide an empirical assessment of how individual projects are contributing to accomplishment of the overall objectives of the Initiative. The Lamprey Conservation Initiative has been functioning since 2007 and BPA-funded since 2017, but it is unclear if projects supported by the Initiative are making progress "to achieve long-term persistence of Pacific Lamprey and support traditional tribal cultural use over the U.S. range."

Comment:

This umbrella project proposal is intended to facilitate funding for high priority, but currently unfunded, opportunities to restore, monitor, and evaluate lamprey abundance and distribution within the Columbia Basin. It uses a process developed by the Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative to address the declines in abundance and distribution of Pacific lamprey, and continuing threats to their existence in freshwater habitats throughout their U.S. range (Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and California).

We commend the proponents (particularly the co-chairs of the Conservation Team) and the signatories to the Cooperative Agreement for their collaborative efforts. However, some elements of the Initiative remain to be addressed and are listed as Qualifications. It would have been useful to demonstrate how component projects are addressing the hypotheses and threats listed, and to describe in more detail the metrics and M&E procedures being used by the component projects.

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

The overarching goals of this umbrella project are to facilitate, coordinate, and prioritize Pacific lamprey recovery actions throughout the states of Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, and Idaho. Secondarily the proponents seek funding for prioritized actions. Currently, the conservation agreement has 33 signatories that represent tribal, state, and federal natural resource agencies.

The proposal lists seven qualitative "objectives": (1) evaluate Pacific lamprey population structure; (2) identify global issues that are impacting Pacific lamprey; (3) provide public outreach; (4) facilitate data sharing; (5) identify and characterize Pacific Lamprey for the RMUs; (6) identify, secure, and enhance watershed conditions contained in the RMUs; and (7) restore Pacific lamprey to the RMUs. The ISRP considers these to be goal statements rather than quantifiable objectives with timelines, ones that could be used to measure progress. (Note also that these objectives have not been modified to address the same concern in our previous review, ISRP 2017-13). Given the broad scope of this initiative, it will likely be necessary to develop multiple quantitative objectives for each goal. Within that format, biological metrics could be incorporated into the objectives to address population-scale effects of management efforts.

The proposal clearly explains why this project was initiated and how it is strategically consistent with biological objectives identified in the Pacific Lamprey Restoration Initiative, as well as critical uncertainties identified in the Fish and Wildlife Program. However, as noted above, for the purposes of this review, it is difficult to understand how this umbrella project stands in relation to other more specific projects that are also being reviewed, and a similar umbrella proposal from CRITFC (2008-524-00 "Implement Tribal Pacific Lamprey Restoration Plan").

Thirteen deliverables are described. None addresses objectives 1, 3, or 4. The deliverables represent individual projects that have been prioritized for funding in 2019. Each of these projects should have its own quantitative objectives with anticipated completion dates.

2. Results and Adaptive Management

The project appears to have been successful in initiating and maintaining a process to address the objectives. All three components—the Assessment, Conservation Agreement, and Regional Implementation Plans (RIP)—have now been created. Numerous cost sharing and collaborative agreements have been signed among federal, regional, state, and tribal entities involved in the Initiative. A structured prioritization of proposed projects is operating within the framework of an adaptive management process.

The Initiative began in 2007. Since that time the project has gained signatories, helped establish RIPs, established a formal process for evaluating submitted proposals, and funded lamprey recovery actions. Projects wholly or partially funded by the Initiative have the potential to answer questions in the following categories of the Council's 2017 Research Plan: Tributary Habitat, Mainstem Habitat, Fish Propagation, Hydrosystem Flow and Passage Operations, Estuary, Plume and Ocean, Population Structure and Diversity, Predation, Contaminants, and Climate Change.

The Initiative's five-year assessment provides the proponents with an opportunity to see the effects that sponsored projects may have had on the status and trends of Pacific lamprey. It is unclear, however, how results of the project's assessment process will be used by the RMUs to modify or adjust their RIPs if that proves to be necessary.

The RIP development and project selection process of the Pacific Lamprey Initiative is expected to identify and fill gaps that are not being addressed by current Columbia River Basin projects. It is expected to foster the development of new methods and to provide additional knowledge on status and limiting factors that will help to restore Pacific lamprey abundance throughout the Columbia River Basin.

Project results will be reported in annual RIPs and the Initiative is currently developing a Pacific Lamprey Data Clearinghouse. Additionally, GIS support is available to display lamprey distribution patterns, abundance, and threat data. These tools, plus the organizational structure of the Initiative, make it likely that lessons learned by individual projects will be widely shared among the RMUs.

Annual reports for 2018, the first year of funding for this project under the Fish and Wildlife Program, are not expected until April 2019, and were not available for this review. This proposal does not acknowledge our previous review (ISRP 2017-13) nor does it include any response to qualifications and concerns expressed in that review.

The Initiative has released a number of other reports and documents, including a description of the Pacific Lamprey Conservation Agreement, regional implementation plans, best management practices to minimize impacts on Pacific lamprey, and practical guidelines for lamprey passage at fishways. The proponents suggest that these reports and other products from component projects helped the Council develop aspects of its 2014 Fish and Wildlife plan that were related to producing self-sustaining populations of Pacific lamprey. The project is also working closely with CRITFC, USACE, BOR, the mid-Columbia PUDs, and state fish and wildlife agencies on how to maintain, recover, and supplement Pacific lamprey in the Columbia Basin.

Surprisingly, only one report was included in the Taurus database for this review. It is unclear if reports and publications from projects supported by the Initiative are accumulated and available through the Initiative's office. There is no mention in the proposal of a repository for data obtained through projects supported by the Initiative.

It is also disappointing that no projects have been selected to focus on genetic identification of populations and population structure. It seems that insufficient research is being conducted to investigate the spatial scale of genetic adaptations within the Basin (a previous concern and qualification from our previous review (ISRP 2017-13)).

While the project contains a process for selecting projects, it lacks a process for monitoring and evaluating projects to determine the extent to which they are helping to achieve the goals and objectives listed in the 2012 Cooperative Agreement. A lack of quantification of the objectives in the Cooperative Agreement will complicate assessment of individual projects and overall success of the Initiative.

The proposal does not contain any discussion of lessons learned. There is a need to assimilate and share information on lessons learned through implementation of the component projects. The program should develop and apply an adaptive management process where lessons learned by researchers in each RMU can be broadly shared with all the Initiative's partners.

3. Methods: Project Relationships, Work Types, and Deliverables

The proposal describes how the Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative develops and prioritizes proposals for conservation action or research for each of 17 RMUs within the United States. Four of these RMUs are in the Columbia River Basin. RIPs are developed for each RMU and updated annually to document the status of, threats to, and opportunities for lamprey restoration. The RIPs in turn guide development of RMU project proposals. The RIPs are submitted to a Conservation Team comprising representatives of the Initiative from throughout the Columbia River Basin. The Conservation Team prioritizes and submits prospective RMU projects to the Policy Committee for approval. The Policy Committee suggests where funding for approved projects may be obtained.

A more formal description of the process for proposal development and selection within RMUs would be of value to participants in the Initiative. There is a need to enhance assurances of scientific objectivity during proposal development within RMUs and subsequent assessment by the Conservation Team.

In the 2017 review, the ISRP asked a series of questions about this process:

  1. What is the process for composing and updating the RIP within each RMU?
  2. Who develops the RIP for each RMU?
  3. Do representatives from all signatories to the Initiative participate for each RMU?
  4. Do organizations that are not signatories to the Initiative participate in the development of RIPs?
  5. Are organizations that contribute to composing and updating RIPs also potential recipients of funds for projects proposed based on the RIP for that RMU?
  6. How are potential conflicts of interest addressed in the process?
  7. How is scientific objectivity assured within the process of composing and updating RIPs?

and about the process within the Conservation Team:

  1. How is the Conservation Team composed?
  2. Are all signatories to the Initiative represented within the Conservation Team?
  3. Do all signatories to the Initiative participate equally (1 signatory, 1 vote) on the Conservation Team?
  4. Are participants on the Conservation Team also potential recipients of project funds? If so, how are potential conflicts of interest addressed?

These questions should be answered in the Initiative's next annual report.

The first level of M&E mentioned (the Strategic Habitat Conservation approach) is relevant to the overall Initiative and to periodic revision of the RIPs. However, it does not appear to provide an M&E framework for the individual projects selected. The ISRP does not understand how M&E and adaptive management would be conducted within the individual projects (deliverables 1-13). Methods for assessing the success of projects supported by the Initiative are not described in the proposal. The proposal does not provide links to proposals or reports from individual projects to enable scientific review of the projects. Hypotheses being addressed by individual projects are not described in the proposal.

Documentation Links:

Project Relationships: None

Name Role Organization
Siena Lopez-Johnston Project Manager Bonneville Power Administration
Christina Wang Project Lead US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS)
Steve Williams (Inactive) Project Lead Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission
Brian McIlraith Project Lead HDR Engineering, Inc.
David Kaplowe Supervisor Bonneville Power Administration
William Stinnette Env. Compliance Lead Bonneville Power Administration
Tabatha Rood Interested Party Bonneville Power Administration