These are a selection of studies related to Friends of the Eel River’s work protecting the Eel River and its fisheries.
This paper from the National Marine Fisheries Service confirms previous research and traditional ecological knowledge that the upper Eel River behind Scott dam includes some of the best salmon and steelhead habitat in the entire watershed. To quote the paper, "the blocked Upper Mainstem generally contains a higher proportion of suitable habitat for all freshwater salmonid life stages than much of the rest of the Eel River Basin." Click here to read the paper, with highlights added to our favorite quotes from the conclusion.
Samantha Kannry, fisheries masters graduate from UC Davis, presents her research on Eel River steelhead and their diverse life-history including pre-mature migration. Sam's research found genetic evidence that summer steelhead utilized the upper Eel River habitat behind Scott dam over a century ago before the dam blocked migratory access. Click here to read the study.
This study, prepared by Miller Pacific Engineering Group is a summary of slope stability analyses for the landslide adjacent to Scott Dam's left/southern abatement. The study concludes that the large landscape complex that is adjacent to the left abutment is a geologic hazard to the dam that needs to be investigated further and ultimately recommends that PG&E have a more detailed analysis conducted on the landslide's potential affects on the dam, including soil pressure and seismic displacements. Click here to read the study.
This study was conducted by John Rosenblum, PhD. He concluded that replacing the hydropower facility with 3 acres of solar panels would increase energy generation. Dr. Rosenblum also noted that hydropower is extremely variable, and that output is often at zero in winter when solar output would also be low. Given that the Potter Valley Project is operated to divert water out of the watershed, energy generation is highest in the summer (when irrigation needs are highest) and could easily be replaced by solar PV. Click here to read the study.
This study was conducted by Dr. Alison O'Dowd and Dr. William Trush, co-directors of Humboldt State University's River Institute. O'Dowd and Trush compared flow conditions impaired with dams with flow conditions that were unimpaired in the Mainstem Eel River to figure out how the flows could be managed to optimize the habitat of juvenile salmonids during the spring hydrographic recession limb. Click here to read the report.
This report was prepared for the Eel River Forum by the Eel River Forum members and consists of information regarding salmonids and recommended actions for the recovery of salmonids. The report also provides summary descriptions of issues the Eel River Forum has identified as primary factors impairing salmonid recovery and the Eel River's ecological health. Click here to read the report.
This study was conducted by Eli Asarian of Riverbend Sciences on behalf of Friends of the Eel River. This study analyzes long-term trends in streamflow, precipitation, and precipitation-adjusted streamflow in the Eel River Basin. Click here to read the full study.
This study was prepared CDFW and evaluates the environmental impacts of water diversions for cannabis cultivation. It indicates that water demand for the cultivation has the potential to divert significant portions of streamflow, and that decreased streamflow is likely to have lethal effects on salmon and steelhead trout species that have state and federal listings as well as a negative impact on vulnerable amphibian species. Click here to read the study.
This summary prepared for the Golden Gate Salmon Association estimates the value of a restored commercial and recreational salmon fishery in California. Click here to read the letter.
This summary was prepared for the Wiyot Tribe by Stillwater Sciences and provides current information regarding Pacific Lamprey as well as research needs related to the species. Click here to read the summary.
This report was commissioned by California Trout and written by Ronald M. Yoshiyama and Peter B. Moyle at University of California Davis Center for Watershed Sciences. The authors conclude that chinook salmon, coho salmon, and steelhead in the Eel River Basin are advancing towards extinction. The report includes recovery recommendations which include watershed-wide restoration programs, evaluation of the Potter Valley Project, pikeminnow population control, special protections for summer steelhead, and more. Click here to read the report.
This report from the Center for Watershed Sciences at UC Davis describes California salmon, steelhead, and trout species. It includes essential steps to recovering California's salmonids including: implementing flows that are ecologically sustainable, reducing the migratory barriers to adults and juveniles, restoring watersheds, reducing human impacts on the landscape, and reducing the competition from salmonids that are non-native. Click here to read the report.
This report was prepared by the Center for Environmental Economic Development (CEED) on behalf of Friends of the Eel River. It outlines potential benefits to Mendocino and Lake Counties that could result Eel River dam removal. The report concludes that the removal of the Potter Valley Project would benefit the Eel River fish, the fisheries, and both Lake and Mendocino Counties economies through creating jobs in deconstruction and increasing nature tourism. Click here to read the Executive Summary. Click here to read the report.
This report was prepared by the Center for Environmental Economic Development (CEED) on behalf of Friends of the Eel River. The report's conclusion states that there is no longer any economic need for the Potter Valley Project and emphasizes the need for restoring the Eel River's natural flows and reducing human environmental impact. Click here to read the Executive Summary. Click here to read the entire report.