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198805305 - Northeast Oregon (NEOH) Outplanting Facilities Master Plan

Sponsor: Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife (ODFW)

Budgets: FY07: $18,870 | FY08: $18,870 | FY09: $18,870

Short description: The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) is collaborating on preliminary design of new hatchery facilities and modifications to Lookingglass Hatchery with the Nez Perce and Umatilla Tribes and federal partners.

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Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)

Funding category: Capital

Recommended budgets: FY07: $18,870 | FY08: $0 | FY09: $0

Comment: See discussion of supplementation m&e in decision memo. On May 9, 2006 the Council approved the final design and construction (Step 3) costs associated with the Northeast Oregon Hatchery (NEOH) currently in discussion between BPA and NOAA Fisheries on crediting . Final recommendation pending additional discussion with Council.

ISRP final recommendation: Response requested

Comment:

(Although the ISRP did not review a response for this project in the fix-it loop, see the ISRP’s general and final comments on the NEOH set of proposals under project 198805305. The comments below are unchanged from the ISRP’s June 2006 preliminary review.) The ISRP requests that the sponsors for the set of NEOH proposals develop a coordinated response to the general comments on the NEOH program provided under proposal 198805301 as well as addressing specific comments on individual proposals. Comments specific to this proposal: The short description of this proposal indicates that it would focus on the planning and construction for outplanting facilities associated with NEOH programs and projects. We urge the various cooperating co-managers to work together to provide a compelling logic path or set of evidence that it is justified in terms of benefit to the targeted populations and subbasins. Under separate review, the ISRP did not judge that construction of a new production facility in the basin would be warranted until some of the data and evaluation demonstrate that supplementation can achieve its objectives at rebuilding wild production. A single robust stock assessment (with trend) would seem a critical element that is missing (or at least not obvious). Technical and scientific background: NEOH Outplanting Facilities Master Plan is not amenable to scientific review, per se except within the larger context of NEOH. The larger integrated project Master Plan (NEOH supplementation) has gone through several stages of a 3-step review and issues identified there need to be addressed. There remain a number of issues that may ultimately need to be considered over the longer-term depending on the outcome of the M&E enterprise. Rationale and significance to subbasin plans and regional programs: The sponsors need to provide considerably more clarity in regard to the rationale for embarking on this program and constructing a facility that will require long-term O&M support. While not unique to this proposal or NEOH in general, a repeated theme throughout the Columbia Basin is how supplementation could achieve restoration goals without creating other problems and risk. Here specifically, sponsors indicate that declines in the ESU are largely the result of downstream variables and mortality. While we do not quibble with the gravity of the declines or the mitigation requirements for lost populations, it is not transparent as to how supplementation can overcome such downriver effects. Relationships to other projects: NEOH Outplanting Facilities Master Plan is a large component of the broader NEOH spring Chinook Master Plan along with other NEOH facilities, operations, and M&E projects. The effort is collaborative among Nez Perce and Umatilla tribal authorities, State of Oregon, and the federal managers. This relationship might be better described under separate cover to depict roles and responsibilities for various co-managers. There are some linkages discussed regarding local efforts to secure and repair important habitats, but much of negative impacts to the salmon comes from downstream sources and beyond the scope of the projects. Therefore, it is uncertain where gains will come from as the downstream effects are expected to hit released fish as well. Project history: The Grande Ronde/Imnaha Endemic Spring Chinook Supplementation (NEOH) program history and evolving focus are described. As a construction project, however, the past actions are not described. Previous releases are not overly described as to generate a realistic prediction that the broader program will succeed or fail. Fortunately, an enhanced M&E project will occur hand in hand with the project to address these critical uncertainties. Objectives: This is a construction project so biological objectives are not quite possible. Moreover, the objectives provided are tasks or even cut and past headings from other documents. For example, the "Biological Objective" on the outline form says: "Artificial Production: Current." This is just a section heading from the subbasin plan, not a biological objective. The box for full description contains: "To alleviate the burden at Lookingglass Hatchery and correct facility problems, co-managers proposed new production facilities and modifications at Lookingglass in the Grande Ronde and Imnaha Spring Chinook Master Plan submitted to the NPPC in 2000. NPPC approved the plan and authorized preliminary design and NEPA analysis." This sounds like part of the project history. It is not expressed as a biological objective. Tasks (work elements) and methods: NEOH Outplanting Facilities Master Plan has specific construction and planning activities, none are specifically biological. Moreover, the planning method is not spelled out beyond the proposal that there will be meetings. M&E is integrated and extensive through NEOH Monitoring and Evaluation Implementation project #200713200. The longer-term effectiveness of the project will need to be addressed in the future following completion of construction (~5 to 10 years hence). There are, however, data from other related NEOH projects that should be brought to bear on the need/rationale for this project. Facilities, equipment, and personnel: Facilities will be modified or constructed to increase production capacities. Staff and equipment are available already or are accessible. Information transfer is described in NEOH M&E Implementation proposal. Benefits to focal and non-focal species: The project will address condition of spring Chinook salmon as a targeted focal species. This project is a critical infrastructure need for the expanded supplementation program described in the NEOH spring Chinook supplementation project. There is no real discussion of impacts or benefits to non-focal species either within Subbasin or out.

Response loop edit

See the sponsor's revised proposal from the response loop. You'll be taken to CBFWA's proposal system in Section 10 where most sponsors uploaded revised narratives or other responses to the ISRP comments.

State/province recommendation: Fundable

Review group: OSPIT - Blue Mountain

Recommended budgets: FY07: $18,870 | FY08: (n/a) | FY09: (n/a)

Comment: Project is considered capital for FY07 NEOH planning and not funded after FY07.