United States
Environmental Protection
Office Of Water
EPA 840-N-93-005
Fall 1993
&EPA Watershed Events
~ An EPA Bulletin on Integrated Aquatic Ecosystem Protection ~
In This Issue...
Watershed Activities
North Chickamauga Creek (TN)
Totten-Little Skookum Water-
shed (WA)
Bear Creek (OR)
Trinity River (CA)
Minnesota River (MN)
San Franisco Bay (CA)
"Know Your Watershed Campaign"
Upcoming Conferences
Recent Releases
Watershed Events is intended to
update interested parties on the
development and use of watershed
protection approaches. Watershed
protection approaches are integrated
and holistic. That is, they consider
the primary threats to human and
ecosystem health within the
watershed, involve those people
most concerned or able to take
actions to solve those problems, and
then take corrective actions in a
comprehensive manner.
Direct questions and comments
about Watershed Events to the
Anne Robertson, (202) 260-9112
Office of Wetlands, Oceans and
U.S. EPA (4501F)
401 M Street, SW
	Washington, D.C. 20460
A Note from Bob Perciasepe
Assistant Administrator for Water
U. S. Environmental Protection Agency
As I begin my tenure as EPA's caring for the resource. As we are
Assistant Administrator for Water,
I am excited by the energy and en-
thusiasm I have found within the
Agency for watershed manage-
ment. I am a strong believer in
addressing the whole resource
rather than focusing on isolated
areas or issues.
My years of experience in Mary-
land have proved to me that we
cannot succeed by addressing prob-
lems individually. I know of ex-
ample after example where we have
brought a lake, river, or stream into
complete compliance, and yet the
resource remains degraded. With-
out a more comprehensive evalua-
tion of all the problems affecting
the resource, we are likely to miss
fundamental problems that must
be addressed in order to fully re-
store the resotfrce. Watershed man-
agement provides the framework
and the tools we need to success-
fully deal with all of the problems
affecting our waters.
Another aspect of watershed man-
agement that I find very important
and beneficial is the emphasis
placed on involving all parties in
all aware, public staff levels and
financial resources are limited, and
many of the problems that we must
now confront are diffuse. No one
entity or agency has the resources
to protect our waters alone. Suc-
cessfully addressing today's prob-
lems will require the cooperation
of all stakeholders—landowners,
businesses, all levels of govern-
ment, academic institutions, envi-
ronmental/recreational groups,
and local community groups.
Because stakeholder support and
involvement are so important, we
at EPA must continue to educate
and inform these potential players.
As EPA Administrator Browner
emphasized during recent remarks
to Office of Water staff, we have to
make sure that we are communi-
cating effectively. Our work and
goals must be described in a way
that the public clearly understands.
My years of work with the Chesa-
peake Bay have shown me just how
successful and productive we can
be when we all work together and
take a watershed approach. In the
Note-Continued on Page 11
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<_)<"/ contain* at least SO% recycled tibef

Page 2	Watershed Events	Fall 1993
Citizens Spur Greenway Development Along the North Chickamauga Creek
by Linda K. Hixon, Friends of the North Chickamauga Creek Greenway, Inc.
North Chickamauga Creek begins
with theunion of two small streams
near the crest of Walden Ridge in
southeast Tennessee near the City
of Chattanooga. The creek flows
eastward for a few miles, then be-
gins a rapid descent toward the
valley floor, cutting a deep central
gorge into the sandstone of the pla-
teau. Upon entering the valley, the
creek winds its way through the
heart of the Hixson community
before emptying into the Tennes-
see River just below Chickamauga
Dam. In its 32-mile course from
ridgetop to river, the creek drains
some 120 square miles of upland
and valley land.
The Hixson community is one of
the fastest growing areas in
Hamilton County, Tennessee. Ap-
proximately half of the community
lies within the boundaries of the
City of Chattanooga, the other half
lies within an unincorporated sec-
tion of the county. Despite the pres-
sures of urbanization and the an-
nexation of part of the Hixson area
by the city, the residents have re-
tained a strong sense of commu-
In January 1987, responding to sug-
gestions from local residents that a
public park needed to be estab-
lished in the rapidly urbanizing
Hixson area, the Hixson Branch of
the Chattanooga Area Chamber of
Commerce created a park commit-
tee. A local attorney chaired the
committee and assembled a
multidisciplinary team of volun-
teers to work on the project that
included a librarian, a certified pub-
lic accountant, a local business
leader, a Tennessee Valley Author-
ity (TVA) landscape architect, a se-
nior planner with the local plan-
ning commission, and a civil engi-
Prohibitive land acquisition costs
for centrally located tracts of land
in the community which would be
suitable fordevelopment in thestyle
of a traditional, large, rectangular
park steered the committee away
from that alternative to a better one:
the establishment of a greenway
along the lower eight miles of North
Chickamauga Creek. The green-
way would provide a more diverse
array of recreational opportunities
for the community and would in-
clude a hiking/bicycling trail that
would generally follow the mean-
dering course of North Chick-
amauga Creek from the center of
the community to the Tennessee
riverfront. The greenway and trail
would also link the Hixson com-
munity with the Tennessee
RiverPark, an extensive linear park
proposed for development and
management by the City of Chatta-
nooga and Hamilton County along
an 11 mile stretch of the Tennessee
River beginning at Chickamauga
Dam and extending south of down-
town Chattanooga.
For the initial segment of the
greenway, the park committee fo-
cused on a large wooded tract of
land bordering the lower mile of
the creek. The committee discov-
ered the tract while researching
prospective park locations. The
tract was part of TVA's
Chickamauga Dam Reservation.
The tract's location at the confluence
of the creek with the Tennessee
River and the existence of an old
roadway that extended through the
tract, paralleling the creek, which
could be easily converted into a
hiking/bicycling trail, made the
parcel ideal.
Over the next two and a half years,
the committee developed, with as-
sistance from TV A, Chattanooga's
parks department, local planning
commission staff, and others, a de-
tailed plan for a greenway and a
hiking/bicycling trail along the
lower eight miles of the creek. A
large map was prepared and a writ-
ten plan was published. The com-
mittee contacted property owners,
assisted TV A in preparing a site
plan for the initial greenway seg-
ment (on the TV A Reservation),
helped obtain funding for the
project, and rallied public and po-
litical support. Key early support
was received from the city commis-
sioner who administered the city's
parks and recreation program, the
mayor, U. S. Senators Jim Sasser
and A1 Gore, and U. S. Representa-
tive Marilyn Lloyd. The Tennessee
Department of Conservation also
provided assistance to the commit-
In 1988, a local artist painted a scene
of the creek and donated it to the
Chamber of Commerce so that
funds for the project could be raised
through the sale of prints of the
painting. The county's state legis-
lative delegation, at the request of
Representative Bobby Wood, ear-
marked $50,000 of the county's ho-
tel-motel tax to support develop-
ment of the greenway. Also that
year, the park committee was in-
strumental in the passage of legis-
lation to amend the state's laws
that provide certain liability pro-
tections for landowners who grant
conservation easements to the state
to include such protections for land-
owners who grant conservation
easements to county and munici-
pal governments.

Fall 1993
Watershed Events
In January 1989, a chance encoun-
ter between the chairman of the
park committee and the director of
the National Park Service's (NPS)
Rivers and Trails Conservation
Assistance Program led to NPS staff
becoming involved in the park
committee's North Chickamauga
Creek project. When the City of
Chattanooga created a greenway
advisory board in June 1989 to help
implement the North Chickamauga
Creek Greenway and plan for a
system of greenways throughout
the Chattanooga area, the NPS staff
continued to provide valuable as-
sistance. Impressed by the area's
scenic qualities and local interest in
greenway development, NPS an-
nounced in April 1991 a metropoli-
tan recreational corridor planning
project for the 8-county Chatta-
nooga metropolitan area. Work on
that project is underway.
Also in 1989, TV A began construc-
tion of a 1.25 mile paved trail, a
picnic pavilion, restroom, and im-
proved canoe access point on the 40
acres of the Chickamauga Dam
Reservation that would constitute
the initial segment of the greenway
and designated the remaining 200
acres of that parcel of the Reserva-
tion for preservation as a "Small
Wild Area." The TV A Small Wild
Area has also been designated as
an "Urban Wildlife Sanctuary" by
The National Institute for Urban
Wildlife and as a State Natural Area
by the Tennessee Department of
Environment and Conservation. A
local Boy Scout Troop has devel-
oped an unsurfaced 1.3-mile loop
trail in the area that links with the
paved greenway trail.
In December 1989, the Chatta-
nooga-Hamilton County Regional
Planning Commission and the City
of Chattanooga formally adopted
the North Chickamauga Creek
Greenway Plan. Also that year, the
Hamilton County Commission
adopted a resolution supporting the
North Chickamauga Creek
Greenway and the general concept
of greenways.
On May 19,1990, the first segment
of the greenway was dedicated,
with U. S. Senator Jim Sasser being
the keynote speaker. At the dedi-
cation, TV A gave the City of Chat-
tanooga an easement to manage
and maintain the 40 acre tract that
makes up this section of the
greenway. Several days thereafter,
the City Commission authorized
the purchase of a 180 acre farm,
featuring 2.5 miles of creek front-
age, adjoining the northern bound-
ary of the initial greenway segment.
The City of Chattanooga has ex-
tended the greenway trail onto the
farm and has developed a couple of
canoe access points there. In the
summer, the City of Chattanooga
operates a popular canoeing pro-
gram on the creek. Volunteers from
a coalition of neighborhood groups
known as H.E.L.P. have promoted
use of the farm as an environmen-
tal education center. A concept
plan has been prepared and the
City of Chattanooga plans some
limited development of the prop-
erty to facilitate such use.
To meet the need for a structured,
on-going entity to facilitate citizen
involvement in the planning and
establishment of the North
Chickamauga Creek Greenway; to
encourage sound land use decisions
.throughout the entire watershed
area and preservation of the area's
significant natural, historic and
cultural resources; and to help pro-
vide needed funding, four mem-
bers of the former Hixson Chamber
of Commerce's park committee in-
corporated on St. Patrick's Day 1993
a nonprofit organization called
Friends of the North Chickamauga
Creek Green way, Inc. (FNCCG). A
$1,000 American Greenways
DuPont Award from the Conser-
vation Fund has helped the organi-
zation meet initial expenses. Tech-
nical assistance has been provided
by staff of The Conservation Fund.
FNCCG is currently involved in an
effort to develop and implement a
model protection plan for North
Chickamauga Creek's gorge and
upper watershed area. Partners in
this project include The Conserva-
tion Fund, NPS, and American
Whitewater Affiliation. One of the
large landowners in the gorge,
Bowater Incorporated, made a sig-
nificant contribution to the effort
when it dedicated 1,095 acres in
June 1993 as a "Pocket Wilderness
Area" and constructed 1.5-mile and
4.5-mile hiking trails for public use.
The first phase of the watershed
protection project: development of
a Conservation Plan which will
serve to determine and identify ar-
eas of primary and secondary con-
servation value, is near completion.
Work on the second phase: devel-
opment of a Sustainable Land Use
Management Plan, will be under-
way soon and is being funded by a
grant from the Lyndhurst Founda-
FNCCG is also assisting the City of
Chattanooga by contacting land-
owners to encourage donation of
the land and easements needed for
completion of the greenway and
trail plan that the City of Chatta-
nooga adopted for the lower eight
miles of the creek. With technical
assistance from The Conservation
Fund and TV A, FNCCG is working
with cooperative landowners to
prepare conceptual site plans for
the greenway segments in their ar-
eas. For additional information,
contact Linda K. Hixon, President,
FNCCG, One N orthgate Park, Suite
303, Chattanooga, TN 37415, (615)

Watershed Events
Fall 1993
Locals Unite to Maintain Watershed's Rural Character
by Commissioner Laura Porter, Mason County, WA
The Totten-Little Skookum Water-
shed in Washington State is spec-
tacular by anyone's standards. It is
the second most productive shell-
fish growing area in the state. Visu-
ally, the watershed presents itself
in its natural state with water at its
heart, shellfish lined beaches, for-
ested banks, quiet rural homes, tim-
ber production, and small farm
operations. Its "sense of place" is
powerful and adds significant
meaning to the lives of local resi-
Totten-Little Skookum watershed
is situated in the southwest corner
of Puget Sound in Mason and
Thurston Counties. Mason County
is experiencing rapid population
growth (23 percent since 1990). The
pressures of that growth threaten
the watershed's physical beauty,
shellfish production, and environ-
mental health.
Because local citizens recognized
their watershed was at risk and
value water quality, they began a
watershed planning process in
1985. Citizens representing diverse
interests (including public, busi-
ness, individual, and tribal perspec-
tives) participated in the planning
The committee worked together
with a staff facilitator for over two
years. They shared perspectives,
found common definitions of prob-
lems, and allowed the chaos of dis-
agreement and diverse points of
view to freely flow from meeting to
meeting. Every resident of the wa-
tershed was surveyed and numer-
ous town hall meetings with hun-
dreds participating were held in
the watershed. Over time, this
group developed a plan for the area
with a central focus: maintaining
the rural character of the water-
shed. Rural character incorporated
many factors for these citizens, in-
cluding the general feeling and look
of the neighborhoods, interactions
of families, resource lands, and
water quality. Through this pro-
cess neighbors have gotten to know
each other and have offered their
skills to benefit the watershed.
The plan they developed called for
major actions to preserve rural char-
acter. Those actions required fund-
ing for their implementation. In
local government, environmental
action must compete with constitu-
tionally mandated criminal justice
services for general funds. In this
competition, criminal justice nearly
always wins. So, the committee
recommended formation of a clean
water district for the purpose of
generating dedicated revenue.
They recommended that this rev-
enue be collected from each house-
hold in the form of an annual fee.
With this money, septic systems
would be monitored, farms would
got needed assistance with imple-
menting Best Management Prac-
tices, and other important work
would be done.
Mason County formed this Clean
Water District in January 1993. Re-
markably, the funding partners for
the first three years of District ac-
tivities have gone beyond the
household fee. The Washington
State Department of Ecology
granted monies to match local dol-
lars. The local shellfish growers
contributed $18,000 per year to
show their interest in clean water.
The U. S. Environmental Protec-
tion Agency contributed monies to
facilitate formation of an advisory
council for the district.
This local-state-federal-business
partnership has been instrumental
in instilling confidence in the im-
portance of the new district. Local
per-household fees will ensure that
state and federal investments will
be maintained and enhanced in fu-
ture years and for future genera-
Because of the new dedicated rev-
enue source, Mason County Clean
Water District staff are implement-
ing the recommendations of the
watershed plan and protecting
Totten-Little Skookum Water from
degradation. For additional infor-
mation, contact Laura Porter, Ma-
son County Board of Commission-
ers, Mason County Coruthouse
Building 1,411 North Fifth, Shelton,
WA 98584, (206) 427-9670, ext. 419.
Request for Submissions
Submissions to Watershed Events
are always welcome. Submis-
sions should be 1-3 pages in
length and should include a
contact person. Send submis-
sions to:
Anne Robertson
U.S. EPA (4501F)
401 M Street, SW
Washington, D.C 20460
(202) 260-9112
FAX (202) 260-2529

Fall 1993
Watershed Events
Efforts Underway to Restore Urban
Section of Bear Creek
In Medford, Oregon the commu-
nity has come together to repair a
section of Bear Creek that flows
through its downtown. This effort
is part of a basin-wide attempt to
restore the environment, improve
water quality and fisheries, enhance
wildlife habitat and aesthetics, and
increase public awareness of Bear
Creek. The Rogue Valley Founda-
tion sponsors the Downtown Bear
Creek Restoration Project. Man-
agement of the project is provided
by the Downtown Bear Creek Task
Force whose members include vol-
unteer community leaders; experts
in a wide variety of fields; and local
representatives from business, rec-
reation, environmental, and gov-
ernment groups.
The downtown Medford section of
Bear Creek serves as the connecting
link between the north and south
portions of the Jackson County Bear
Creek Green way. Together, the
Jackson County Greenway and
Downtown Bear Creek groups
cover Bear Creek from its source at
Emigrant Lake to the point where it
empties into the Wild and Scenic
Rogue River in southern Oregon, a
distance of 25 miles.
Agriculture is a major activity in
this watershed, and local farms de-
pend on Bear Creek for their water
supply. The Rogue River Valley
Irrigation District uses a dam, built
on a segment of the creek in down-
town Medford, to draw and circu-
late water to farms in the Medford
vicinity. The dam creates a back-
water pool which permits the sun
to warm the slower moving water
behind it. This warm water is det-
rimental for fish migration and
spawning. Also, over the years silt
had built up both behind the dam
and at the foot of the fish ladder,
making it difficult for fish to bypass
the dam at all, thus making 23 miles
of fish spawning habitat inacces-
sible. Anadromous fish popula-
tions are especially threatened be-
cause of the declining spawning
areas, a problem that is common
throughout the Northwest. Sun-
light on the pool behind the dam
causes nutrients to grow into oxy-
gen-consuming algae. Pollution
from storm drains, processed sew-
age, agriculture runoff, and Inter-
state 5 drainage has earned a "wa-
ter quality limited" designation for
Bear Creek. In addition, encroach-
ing development has eliminated
native plants necessary for wildlife
habitat and creek preservation.
Over a span of five years the
Medford Urban Renewal Agency,
which originally created the Bear
Creek Task Force, developed a pro-
posal for restoring the downtown
section of Bear Creek. The pro-
posal includes modifying the dam;
constructing a new diversion; con-
structing fish facilities (riprap is-
lands, resting pools, state-of-the-
art screens, and ladders in the cen-
tral channel); planting shade trees
near the creek bed to keep water
temperatures down; reconstructing
and securing the creek banks; cre-
ating wetlands to filter contami-
nants and sediments; and building
creek overlooks and interpretative
plant walks to educate the commu-
nity. The Medford Urban Renewal
Agency provided substantial aid
for the planning and engineering
phases of the project.
To fund implementation of the Bear
Creek proposal, the Task Force is
seeking assistance from govern-
ment agencies, private foundations,
and civic organizations. The
Medford Rogue Rotary and
Medford Rotary Clubs sponsored
the creation of two overlooks at the
dam. Meanwhile, other local groups
are planning contributions of land-
scaping, native vegetation pur-
chases, and additional o verlookcon-
struction. Most recently, the project
received $20,000 from lottery funds
through the Oregon Governor's Wa-
tershed Enhancement Board, with
contributions from the Oregon De-
partment of Environmental Qual-
ity and the U. S. Environmental Pro-
tection Agency. Another $1.3 mil-
lion is needed to complete the resto-
ration. This project benefits from
both a high level of support from
the community and high visibility.
For additional information, contact
Marsha Danielson, Medford Urban
Rennewal Agency, 411 W. Eighth
St., Room 353, Medford, OR 97501,
(503) 770-4434.	
Management and
Protection of Coastal
Waters: Tools for Local
January 27-28,1994
Thibodaux, Louisiana
This workshop conducted by
the U. S. Environmental Protec-
tion Agency is for local officials
and citizen leaders and focuses
on growth management strate-
gies and techniques to protect
coastal resources. This work-
shop is the first in a series for
1994. Additional sites and dates
will be announced in the near
future. For more information,
contact Macara Lousberg, U. S.
EPA (4504F), 401 M Street, SW,
Washington, DC 20460, (202)

Watershed Events
Fall 1993
Purchase of 17,000 Acres Furthers Restoration of Trinity River
by Kathy Simpson, Soil Conservation Service-Weaverville, CA Field Office and
Jim Cooley, Trinity County Resource Conservation District
In June 1993, the Trinity River Res-
toration Program (TRRP), working
through the National Heritage In-
stitute (NHI) and the Trust for Pub-
lic Land, leveraged a buy-out from
Champion International (a timber
management corporation) of 17,000
acres in the Grass Valley Creek
watershed which is located in
Northern California. The buy-out
effort was initiated and pursued by
the Trinity County Resource Con-
servation District (TCRCD). The
Trinity River drains the 23,000-acre
Grass Valley Creek watershed and
empties into the Pacific Ocean. Af-
ter the buy-out, the title of the land
was turned over to the Bureau of
Land Management, whose manage-
ment priority is to stabilize the frag-
ile and highly erodible soils of the
watershed. This land acquisition
marks the most recent accomplish-
ment in the almost 10 year effort to
restore the Trinity River watershed.
For the past 30 years, soil erosion
has been a major problem in the
Trinity River watershed. The con-
struction of the Trinity and
Lewiston dams on the Trinity River
in 1963 resulted in the diversion of
nearly 90 percent of the flows for
other uses. In the absence of these
flushing flows, decomposed gran-
ite sediment from Grass Valley
Creek watershed began to build up
in the river, causing the loss and
degradation of much of the fish and
wildlife habitat. According to the
old-timers, "there was a time when '
you could walk across the (Trinity)
River on the backs of the fish." It
has been suggested that more than
800,000 salmon and steelhead trout
annually came upriver before 1960,
while as few as 7,000 were found in
1992. These fish populations have
attracted many anglers and camp-
ers, making tourism one of the foun-
dation industries for Trinity
County, California.
To address the degradation of the
Trinity River, the TRRP, a 10 year,
$56 million rehabilitation effort, was
funded by Congress in 1984 and
was spearheaded by the Trinity
River Task Force (TRTF), a group
of 14 federal, state, local, and tribal
agencies.1 The goal of the TRTF is
to restore the fish and wildlife popu-
lations to pre-dam levels.
The efforts to stem the flow of dam-
aging sediments from erosion have
been directed at the most signifi-
cant sediment contributor—Grass
Valley Creek watershed, where
17,000 of the 23,000 acres in this
1 Bureau of Indian Affairs, National
Marine Fisheries Service, Soil Conserva-
tion Service, U. S. Bureau of Land Man-
agement, U. S. Bureau of Reclamation,
U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U. S.
Forest Service, California Department
of Fish and Game, California Depart-
ment of Forestry and Fire Protection,
California Department of Water Re-
sources, California Water Resources
Control Board, HumboldtCounty,Trin-
ity County Board of Supervisors, and
Hoopa Valley Tribe.
mountainous watershed are erod-
ible decomposed granite. Historic
timber harvesting practices, a net-
work of old logging roads, and off-
road vehicle use have all exacer-
bated the erosion problems in Grass
Valley Creek watershed and led to
increased sediment entering the
Trinity River. The TRTF put the
TCRCD in charge of administering
funding for a study by NHI to de-
termine different options for man-
agement of sediment in the water-
shed. Results of this study deter-
mined that a change in land man-
agement from timber production
to watershed viability coupled with
conservation practices was neces-
sary to keep large amounts of sedi-
ment out of the river. At about the
same time, studies conducted by
the Soil Conservation Service (SCS)
from 1981 through 1991 revealed
that 230,000 tons of sediment were
flowing into the Trinity River an-
nually. This amount of sediment
was higher than the natural rate
and destroys the fish spawning and
rearing habitat in the river. The
study concluded that, if left un-
treated, over 1000 sites in the wa-
tershed would deliver 360,000 cu-
bic yards of sediment to the river
over the next 25 years. The SCS
study also concluded that a change
in land-use from timber produc-
tion to watershed stabilization was
necessary to achieve long term sedi-
ment reduction and restore forest
Based on the survey of sediment
production in the watershed and
because of the unique status of Re-
source Conservation Districts
(RCD), the TRRP gave the TCRCD
the contract to rehabilitate Grass
Valley Creek watershed. As spe-

Fall 1993
Watershed Events
cial local districts, RCDs have the
ability to work with both the public
and private sector. The RCD uses
its own locally-created crews and
crews from the California Conser-
vation Corps and California De-
partment of Forestry's Conserva-
tion Camps. RCDs can use force
accounts to hire local contractors as
part of the team. For these reasons
RCDs can get more work done us-
ing less of the taxpayer's money. In
addition, RCDs are made up of lo-
cal people who best know local con-
Efforts to stabilize and revegetate
the decomposed granitic areas have
provided many challenges and op-
portunities to try state-of-the-art
techniques. New revegetation strat-
egies are being tried using native
indigenous plant materials.
TCRCD/SCS teams are doing re-
connaissance, creating site specific
designs, and developing innova-
tive treatments. The goal of the
TCRCD/SCS team was saving
360,000 cubic yards in danger of
entering the river. With the new
strategies, the goal now is to save
over 1 million cubic yards. Buy-out
and title change, recommended by
the NHI study as the best option for
sediment management in the wa-
tershed, has provided opportuni-
ties to treat potential sources of sedi-
ment—old logging roads, landings,
and skids—that are problems.
In addition to the work of the RCD,
the Bureau of Reclamation con-
structed Buckhorn Sediment Dam
in 1990 on the upper portion of
Grass Valley Creek watershed, and
the California Department of Wa-
ter Resources built Hamilton
Dredging Ponds at its mouth in
1991. The dam captures 25 percent
of the sediment output from the
Grass ValleyCreekwatershed. Both
these projects were engineering
measures designed to catch eroded
soil after it left the watershed but
before it reached the river.
Sediment capture techniques are
not the only solutions being em-
ployed to control erosion. Bioengi-
neering, a modern term for tech-
niques such as using willow trees
to curb soil erosion, which dates
back to the 17th Century, is being
re-discovered. Above the Trinity
River, conservationists are using
One of the keys to success for the
Trinity River Restoration Pro-
gram has been the cooperation
of all the agencies and entities
willows to build natural check
dams. Willow branches are woven
together, then driven into the
stream bed where they sprout to
form living filters for silt and de-
bris. The process only requires two
or three workers (in contrast to the
10-person crews required to erect
comparable dams of man-made
materials) and are very low main-
tenance, according to Jim Spear,
District Conservationist for SCS in
The newest tool in the rehabilita-
tion effort is the use of heavy equip-
ment. Previously thought inap-
propriate, treatments using heavy
equipment are being used to create
the desired hydrologic conditions
by returning the natural drainage
patterns and removing large roads
and landings which represent fill
material that was placed in chan-
Many groups have been drawn into
the rehabilitation process. For in-
stance, the TCRCD is in charge of
implementation, with SCS provid-
ing design and technical assistance.
The California Department of
Transportation is working with
TCRCD/SCS to place more empha-
sis on maintenance of roadways
including drainage and erosion con-
trol systems. The Pacific Gas &
Electric Company is working in
cooperation with the TCRCD on
erosion problems in powerline
right-of-ways in the watershed.
A unique part of the Trinity River
restoration effort is the Adopt-A-
Watershed educational program
which has been flourishing in the
Trinity River Basin. The TRTF rec-
ognized the value of education as a
means to insure long-term restora-
tion efforts and provided a budget
of $299,000 to initiate a formal pilot
project for developing curriculum
for Kindergarten through 12th
grades. The TCRCD funds two
Education Coordinator positions to
support the program. Students help
plant trees; work with resource pro-
fessionals to do restoration projects
in the watershed; and study the
streams, plants, and wildlife. Their
data is collected and will present a
picture of changes over time and a
basis for comparison with other
One of the keys to success for the
TRRP has been the cooperation of
all the agencies and entities in-
volved. To ensure buy-in from the
different groups and selection of
the best solutions possible, peer
reviews have been instituted and
frequent tours have been conducted
to inspect the work and get profes-
sional input from the technical ex-
perts and agencies involved. Those
involved realized the futility of turf
battles and put their energy into
working toward the goals of the
project. For additional informa-
tion, contact Kathy Simposn,
USDA-Soil Conservation Service,
#3 Horseshoe Lane, P.O. Box 1414,
Weaverville, CA 96093, (916) 623-

Watershed Events
Fall 1993
Cooperation on Minnesota River Abounds
by Jim Leach, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Minneapolis, MN and
Lynne Kolze, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, St. Paul, MN
The Minnesota River project has
pro vided a new model for conduct-
ing watershed assessments and
planning and implementing water-
shed projects in Minnesota. Rarely
has a watershed project of this size
and complexity resulted in as much
cooperation and as many innova-
tive partnerships. Not only do part-
nerships exist among federal, state,
and local units of government, but
grassroots organizations and a citi-
zens advisory committee play criti-
cal roles as well.
The Minnesota River is 330 miles in
length, stretching from the South
Dakota border to its confluence with
the Mississippi River in the Twin
Cities in Minnesota. The river ba-
sin comprises one-fifth of the total
land mass of Minnesota, or 17,000
square miles. Its watershed lies
within the prairie pothole region of
North America—an area identified
as the number one priority of the
North American Waterfowl Man-
agement Plan. Most of the river
basin (92 percent) is agricultural,
comprising thousands of feedlot
operations, intensive row crop ag-
riculture, and extensive drainage
The Minnesota River is one of the
state's most polluted rivers. The
Minnesota River's water quality
problems are typical of those you
might find in any Midwestern state
where agriculture is a significant
land use. The river chronically vio-
lates water quality standards in its
lower reaches, with low dissolved
oxygen levels, high turbidity, nu-
merous fecal coliform bacteria vio-
lations, and elevated ammonia lev-
els common during summer, low
flow conditions. The Minnesota
River causes a serious deteriora-
tion of water quality to the Missis-
sippi River where the two rivers
For four years (1989-93), the Min-
nesota Pollution Control Agency
(MPCA) has conducted a compre-
hensive, basin-wide study of the
Minnesota River, involving over 15
different agencies at all levels of
government. Special studies were
conducted to analyze physical,
chemical, and biological param-
eters, as well as land use practices.
A final report on the findings of this
assessment is currently being de-
The cooperative nature of the river
assessment process hasspilled over
into the implementation phase of
the project. A cooperative relation-
ship has been established between
the professionals who have stud-
ied the river and the citizens who
are working to develop recommen-
dations for the river's restoration.
In addition, some coordinated
projects aimed at improving the
river's water quality have already
One unique partnership formed as
a result of this project involves the
MPCA, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Ser-
vice, Minnesota Department of
Natural Resources, Minnesota
Board of Water and Soil Resources,
and private conservation organi-
zations. This consortium of agen-
cies recognized that drainage ac-
tivities have significantly altered
natural surface water flow patterns
and contribute to nonpoint source
pollution. In response, they devel-
oped a grant proposal to begin re-
storing and acquiring wetlands
within key subwatersheds. The
grant agreement, for approximately
$1.9 million was approved by the
North American Wetlands Conser-
vation Council in 1992. Waterqual-
ity information gathered by MPCA
will be used to focus grant dollars
in those priority subwatersheds
contributing the greatest amount
of nonpoint pollution to the Min-
nesota River. Wetlands restored
and /or acquired through this grant
provide multiple benefits includ-
ing water quality enhancement,
flood abatement, and critical habi-
tat for wildlife. The first phase of
this effort is to acquire, restore, and
protect over 8,300 acres of wetland
and associated uplands.
The common thread in this part-
nership is the realization that simi-
lar goals are shared by many agen-
cies. While this partnership focuses
primarily on wetlands, many other
causes of environmental degrada-
tion including those that result in
nonpoint pollution need a similar
approach rather than one of indi-
vidual agencies attempting to treat
separate symptoms of the problem.
Minnesota's Governor Carlson es-
tablished a 10 year goal of restoring
the river to a fishable and swim-
mable status. Innovative and effec-
tive partnerships will be the cor-
nerstone upon which this goal is
The Minnesota River Watershed
Partnership demonstrates that col-
Minnesota River-Continued on Page 9

Fall 1993
Watershed Events
Approval of San Francisco Bay/Delta Watershed
Management Plan Nears
by Steve Taylor, U. S. Environmental Protection Agency
On November 17,1993, Governor
Wilson formally concurred with the
San Francisco Comprehensive Con-
servation and Management Plan
(CCMP); and on December 9,1993,
U. S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) Administrator Carol
Browner approved theCCMP. The
CCMP is the result of a five year
cooperative public-private partner-
ship to promote more effective man-
agement of the San Francisco Bay/
Delta Estuary and to restore and
maintain the Estuary's water qual-
ity and natural resources. Comple-
tion of the CCMP marks a major
milestone for the San Francisco Es-
tuary Project (SFEP). EPA estab-
lished the SFEP in 1987, as part of
its National Estuary Program
(NEP), in response to growing pub-
lic concern for the health of the San
Francisco Bay/Delta. The Project
is jointly sponsored by EPA and the
Appalachian Rivers and
Watersheds Symposium:
Shared Perspectives,
Sharing Solutions
June 2-5,1994
Morgantown, WV
This symposium will bring to-
gether various leaders and the
public to discuss issues and so-
lutions to problems facing the
rivers and watersheds of Appa-
lachia. The purpose of the sym-
posium is to encourage integra-
tion of socialand ecological con-
cerns in the protection of Appa-
lachian river resources. For
more information, contact:
Dr. Steven J. Hollenhorst, Divi-
sion of Forestry, West Virginia
University, P.O. Box 6125,
Morgantown, WV 26506-6125,
(304) 293-3721 x441, FAX (304)
State of California. It is financed by
federal appropriations under the
Clean Water Act and matching
funds from the state and local enti-
San Francisco Bay and the Delta
combine to form the West Coast's
largest estuary which conveys the
waters of the Sacramento and San
Joaquin Rivers to the Pacific Ocean.
It encompasses roughly 1,600
square miles, drains over 40 per-
cent of the state (60,000 square
miles), and contains about 5 mil-
lion acre-feet of water at mean tide.
The Estuary watershed provides
drinking water to 20 million Cali-
fornians and irrigates 4.5 million
acres of farmland. Each year, two-
thirds of the state's salmon pass
through the Bay / Del ta, as do nearly
half of the waterfowl and shore-
birds migrating along the Pacific
Flyway. In addition, Estuary wa-
ters enable the nation's fourth-larg-
est metropolitan region to pursue
many activities, including shipping,
fishing, recreation, and commerce.
Managing a watershed as impor-
tant and complex as the Estuary is
a challenging task. The compelling
need for environmental protection
must be weighed against compet-
ing uses of Estuary waters and re-
sources. To address this challenge,
the SFEP brought together over 100
representatives from the private
and public sectors, including gov-
ernment, industry, business, and
environmental interests, as well as
elected officials from all 12 Bay/
Delta counties.
The SFEP's Management Confer-
ence identified five critical program
areas of environmental concern-
decline of biological resources, pol-
lutants, freshwater diversions and
altered flow regime, dredging and
waterway modification, and inten-
sified land use~which eventually
became program elements con-
tained in the CCMP. Subcommit-
tees from these five program areas
produced status and trends reports
that summarized the current state
of the watershed's resources and
then provided recommendations
contained in the CCMP that be-
came the basis for action. Through
facilitated consensus-building and
public participation, the Manage-
ment Conference developed the fi-
nal CCMP.
The NEP is a comprehensive pro-
gram that implements the water-
shed protection approach through
section 320 of the Clean Water Act.
Currently, there are 21 estuaries in
the program ranging from Casco
Bay, Maine to Puget Sound, Wash-
ington. The NEP is a cooperative
effort among federal, state, and lo-
cal entities that jointly plan and
implement conservation manage-
ment measures reaching far beyond
the sole authority of the Clean Wa-
ter Act. For more information, con-
tact Steve Taylor, U.S. EPA (4504F),
401M St., SW, Washington, DC
20460, (202) 260-6578.
Minnesota River-Continued From Page 8
lective efforts can be greater than
the sum of individual accomplish-
ments. We must approach water-
shed and /or ecosystem restoration
in this context. For additional in-
formation, contact Lynne Kolze or
Tim Larson, Minnesota Pollution
Control Agency, 520 Lafayette Rd.,
St. Paul, MN 55155-4194, (612) 297-
3825 or (612) 296-7356. For infor-
mation about the North American
Waterfowl Plan, contact Jim Leach,
U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service,
Bishop Henry Whipple Federal
Bldg., 1 Federal Dr., Ft. Snelling,
MN 55111-4056, (612) 725-3313.

Page 10
Watershed Events
Fall 1993
Know Your Watershed Campaign Promotes
Voluntary Action Through Partnerships
by Joan Warren, U. S. Environmental Protection Agency
The Conservation Technology In-
formation Center (CTIC) has be-
gun a project-"Know Your Water-
shed"~to enlist rural and agricul-
tural communities in the manage-
ment of their watersheds. The ba-
sic theme of the campaign is "Know
Your Watershed, Neighbor with
Neighbor, Plan Your Future."
The "Know Your Watershed" cam-
paign is building a national part-
nership of agricultural commodity
groups, farm organizations, farm
managers, agricultural retailers,
industry, government, and others
to address the conservation of natu-
ral resources, watershed protection,
and nonpoint source pollution.
Working through the national part-
nership, the campaign will provide
a leadership role in creating an
awareness of the problems and the
need for voluntary action. The news
media will play a big part in assist-
ing with the initiative. The goal of
the national partnership is to moti-
vate local agricultural leaders to
develop landowner or operator/
private-public partnerships to iden-
tify specific problems and solutions
and to ensure sustainable natural
resources within their watersheds.
The partnership will identify ways
local residents can work together
as well as provide tools and sources
of assistance.
Some of the participants to date
include: U. S. Department of
Agriculture's Soil Conservation
Service, Tennessee Valley Author-
ity, U. S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA), American Farmland
T rust, National Association of Con-
servation Districts, and National
Association of State Conservation
Agencies, as well as the existing
CTIC membership. Over 40 orga-
nizations and groups have been
contacted and are interested in be-
coming members of the partner-
Because the source of the problems
is not limited to agriculture, solu-
tions must be found by working
within local watersheds to identify
all the sources and take action in
concert with all neighbors, not just
those in the agricultural commu-
Early in theproject, CTIC conducted
seven focus group meetings to ob-
tain some basic information for the
campaign: how well is the concept
of watershed management under-
stood by agricultural producers;
and how best to interest producers'
in working collaboratively to solve
problems that might be present in
their watersheds. The results of the
focus groups indicate that farmers
generally think of a watershed in
terms of their own farming experi-
ence—limited to their immediate
farm. They do not believe agricul-
ture is a major contributor to water
pollution; they believe that manu-
facturing and rural residential
growth have a far greater impact
on water pollution than agricul-
The results of the focus groups fur-
ther showed that farmers believe
water quality issues are important
but overblown and are not as great
as they were 20 years ago. Produc-
ers feel they have contributed to
the solution by using soil conserva-
tion measures. They do not believe
that nutrients and animal wastes
are having a negative effect on wa-
ter quality. However, they do be-
lieve that public perception of agri-
cultural pollutants may outweigh
scientific facts, and this
misperception will affect them in
the future.
In addition, a survey conducted by
the University of Wisconsin found
that nearly 75 percent of agricul-
tural producers polled viewed wa-
ter pollution as a serious problem
nationwide, yet less than 50 per-
cent viewed it as serious in their
own states, and less than 10 percent
saw it as serious on their own land.
Over 40 percent believe their farm-
ing practices had no impact on
water quality in their communi-
ties. These perceptions are at odds
with the findings being reported
by the states.
State 305(b) reports to EPA indicate
that about 65 percent of nonpoint
source water pollution comes from
agriculture. The primary pollut-
ants are sediments, animal waste,
purchased fertilizers, and pesti-
cides. Nonpoint source pollution
is exacerbated by the loss of wet-
lands. As Congress examines
amending the Clean Water Act this
year and begins to develop the 1995
Farm Bill, these issues are becom-
ing more important. Both laws will
likely address agriculture-related
Campaign—Continued on Page 12

Fall 1993
Watershed Events
Page 11
Note-Continued from Page 1
past decade of concentrated effort
to restore the Bay, dozens of busi-
ness, civic, agricultural, scientific
and technical, and environmental
organizations; hundreds of federal,
state, and local government agen-
cies; and thousands of individual
citizens have come together and
undertaken a multitude of activi-
ties to restore the Bay. Achieve-
ments include significant increases
As I lead the efforts to protect ou r
nation's aquatic resources over
the next few years, I will make
watershed management a top
in underwater bay grasses and
striped bass (rockfish) populations;
adoption of conservation measures
to protect fish stocks from overfish-
ing; restoration of fish and bird
habitat; reduction of nitrogen and
phosphorus; implementation of
nutrient management plans on
farms; passage of growth and man-
agement legislation; and the list
As I lead the efforts to protect our
nation's aquatic resources over the
next few years, I will make water-
shed management a top priority.
Administrator Browner is a strong
advocate of this approach too. She
and I both recognize the impor-
tance of partnerships and the need
to work with all parties, particu-
larly the states, to maximize our
success. Your help will also be
needed to build these concepts into
a reauthorized Clean Water Act. I
look forward to working with all
parties as we strive to achieve our
common goal of protected and re-
stored aquatic resources.
Recent Releases
Managing Wasteumter in Coastal
Urban Areas- This National Re-
search Council report describes
key issues relating to wastewa-
ter and storm water manage-
ment and presents case histo-
ries for Boston and San Diego.
Current wastewater manage-
ment approaches in the context
of complex coastal issues, such
as increasing population pres-
sures, significant n On point
source pollution, and decreased
public funding are examined.
An integrated coastal manage-
ment framework for evolving
coastal environmental manage-
ment strategies to successfully
consider multiple sources, cost-
effective controls, and regional
differences is recommended.
This report is available in hard-
back for $49.95 from the Na-
tional Academy Press, 2101 Con-
stitution Avenue, NW, Box 285,
Washington, DC 20005, (202)
334-3313 or 1-800-624-6242.
Native Willow Varieties for the
Pacific Northwest - This booklet
details the various uses and spe-
cies of willow trees. Contact
USDA SCS, Public Affairs, 2121 -
C 2nd Street, Davis, CA 95616.
Using Nonprofit Organizations to
Advance Estuary Program Goals -
This paper examines the role
nonprofit organizations (NPOs)
can play in carrying out the rec-
ommendations for action iden-
tified in the Comprehensive
Conservation and Management
Plans that are being developed
for the 21 estuaries in the Na-
tional Estuary Program, the
paper covers the ability of NPOs
to attract funding and carry out
implementation, oversight, and
federal consistency activities.
Types of NPOs and advantages
and disadvantages of using an
existing N PO versus a newNPO
are also discussed. The issues
and recommendations in this
paper are also relevant to most
ecosystem and watershed man-
agement programs. Contact
Betsy Tam, U. S. EPA (4504F),
401 M Street SW, Washington,
DC 20460.
Water-Related GISs (Geographic
information Systems) Along the
United States-Mexico Border - This
looseleaf catalog identifies 26
existing or proposed GISs within
about 62 miles of the border.
The catalog is intended to help
border governments better man-
age water resources and share
CIS information that may help
sol ve border environment prob-
lems. Contact Betty Ford or Eliot
Tucker, U.S. EPA (4204), 401 M
Street, SW, Washington, DC
A Natural Approach - This 40-
page, full-color brochure on
wetlands mitigation and miti-
gation banking published by the
Federal Highway Administra-
tion (FHWA) focuses on the
problem of vanishing wetlands
and 10 state "success stories."
Contact FHWA, 400 Seventh
Street, SW, H EP-40 (Room3240),
Wahsington, DC 20590, (202)

Campaign-Continued from Page 10
water quality problems and the
need for local watershed manage-
Agricultural producers' actions af-
fect water quality and the produc-
tivity and health in their water-
sheds. If producers do not begin to
voluntarily take action to reduce
or prevent agricultural runoff and
habitat destruction, they may face
regulations and increased litiga-
To assist the agricultural commu-
nity, the "Know Your Watershed"
campaign was launched to increase
agriculture's knowledge of its role.
Initial products include a brochure,
"Forming A Watershed Alliance,"
that describes a watershed and how
human activities may adversely
affect water quality. It provides
suggestions for starting a local wa-
tershed alliance and implementing
practices that protect water qual-
ity. Three awareness scorecards
help landowners and others iden-
tify their knowledge of watersheds
and the environment: "Scorecard
for Rural and Suburban Landown-
ers;" "Scorecard for Farmers and
Ranchers;" and "What is your Eco-
logical Quotient (EQ)?."
The "Know Your Watershed" cam-
paign is building on the experi-
ences and momentum of CTIC's
very successful promotion of crop
residue management (nonconven-
tional or no tillage practices) as a
means for meeting the conserva-
tion compliance requirements of the
1985 Farm Bill. These require-
ments are intended to curb soil ero-
sion on highly erodible land. The
organization formed an effective
alliance with agribusiness, the farm
media (print, radio, and TV), and
governmental agencies at all levels
of government to promote the en-
vironmental and economic benefits
of crop residue management.
CTIC was formed over 10 years
ago. It is composed largely of cor-
porate and business members of
the agricultural community who
sponsor a variety of education and
outreach efforts on "environmen-
tally responsible conservation sys-
tems." The organization works
closely with land grant colleges
and the farm media. For further
information contact, Jerry Hytry,
Executive Director, CTIC, 1220 Pot-
ter Drive, Room 170, West
Lafayette, IN 47906, (317) 494-9555.
United States Environmental
Protection Agency (4501F)
401M Street, SW
Washington, D.C. 20460
Official Business
Penalty for Private Use
Postage and Fees Paid
Pat Ward