In November 2019, Living Lakes Canada attended the Lake Roosevelt Forum Conference in Spokane, Washington. The Forum’s mission is to establish a dialog to strengthen collaboration and cooperation among stakeholders who have interests in and around Lake Roosevelt, which resulted from creating a reservoir to support operational capacity at the Grand Coulee Dam, located on the Columbia River in the state of Washington.
This conference provided an opportunity for our team to connect with local and federal government, Native American Tribes, NGOs and academia who are working on projects that tie into Living Lakes Canada’s Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Collaborative. Partnering with groups south of the border in the future would allow a larger diversity of water data to be shared.
Networking with individuals and groups who are working under the current Columbia River Treaty was a great opportunity to link priorities such as salmon restoration and reintroduction into Living Lakes Canada’s diverse water monitoring programs.
“It was inspiring to witness the increased tribal participation in the Columbia River Treaty (CRT) and collaboration between Native American Tribes who are advocating an ecosystem-based management approach,” said Program Manager Avery Deboer-Smith.
A 2010 document titled Common Views on the Future of the Columbia River Treaty continues to be the guiding less for all participating tribes. Updated in 2015, it outlines a proposal for representing Columbia Basin tribes’ interests in the reconsideration and implementation of a modernized treaty.
Sharing water data to help inform decisions around fish rehabilitation can lead to an enhanced importance of ecosystem-based functions in future negotiations of the CRT.