SJRRP PEIS/EIR Wins National Award

The National Association of Environmental Professionals (NAEP) awarded the Environmental Excellence Award in Environmental Stewardship to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the California Department of Water Resources, and MWH Americas for demonstrating innovation and forward thinking in the development of the San Joaquin River Restoration Program (SJRRP) Program Environmental Impact Statement/Report (PEIS/R). Stillwater biologists supported the MWH team in development of the document.

A.J. Keith, Senior Fisheries Biologist, was a key author and contributor to the fisheries sections of the PEIS/R which provides a roadmap for implementing the SJRRP. The SJRRP will restore spring-run Chinook salmon to a 153-mile long reach of the San Joaquin River in California’s central valley and represents the culmination of over twenty years of collaboration and debate amongst stakeholders on the fate of the river. The restoration plan balances an array of competing interests and concerns from federal and state agencies, as well as national organizations, landowners, and the general public. Creative decision-making and collaborative efforts among these stakeholders throughout the development of the SJRRP ultimately resulted in a restoration plan that provides benefits to numerous fish, vegetation and wildlife species while minimizing water supply impacts to landowners in this highly productive agricultural region.

Stillwater’s involvement in the San Joaquin River restoration planning efforts began nearly a decade ago when we developed Restoration Strategies and Restoration Objectives reports prior to the settlement in 2006. Stillwater has continued to support the SJRRP by providing input to the Fisheries Management Work Group and conducting biological and geomorphic analyses in support of an EIS/EIR for fish passage improvements at Sack Dam and screening of Arroyo Canal. More recently, Stillwater riparian ecologists Zooey Diggory, Bruce Orr, and Amy Merrill began working with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to develop a Riparian Habitat Mapping, Monitoring and Mitigation Plan for the SJRRP.

Posted 22 April 2013.