A coalition of municipal drinking water providers that get water from the Clackamas River are asking customers to help endangered salmon by reducing or shutting off outdoor watering.
Clackamas River Water Providers (CRWP) spokesperson Christine Hollenbeck said these voluntary reductions in water use are especially important starting in late August, when Chinook and Coho salmon begin returning to the Clackamas River on the way to their spawning grounds.
"As our summers are getting longer and hotter, making sure there is enough water in the river for the fall fish runs is getting more challenging," Hollenbeck said. "Most of the year there is plenty of water in the river; however, summer is also the time of year when the Clackamas River is flowing at its lowest levels and we get the least amount of rainfall."
In addition to its salmon and steelhead, the Clackamas River provides drinking water to more than 300,000 people in Lake Oswego, Oregon City, West Linn, Gladstone, Clackamas and Estacada. Customers can show their support for the annual "Fish On the Run, Irrigation Done" campaign to help migrating fish by going to clackamasproviders.org.
At the website, customers can learn about changes they can make to outdoor watering to ensure efficient use of drinking water. If you take the online pledge to conserve water, you will receive a free yard sign to let neighbors know you support the campaign to keep water in the Clackamas River for fish.
"The more water we can conserve, the easier this journey will be for these threatened and endangered salmon species," Hollenbeck said.
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