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Subject:   Seattle City Light Receives Award for Salmon Protection
For Immediate Release:   
1/28/2005  11:00:00 AM
For More Information Contact:
Scott Thomsen  (206) 386-4233

Seattle City Light Receives Award for Salmon Protection


SEATTLE- Shared Strategy for Puget Sound honored Seattle City Light this week for its history of salmon protection on the Skagit River and for specific action the utility took last fall to protect Skagit chinook.

Unusually high rainfall in September caused high tributary flows into the Skagit, raising the river flow and causing chinook to spawn at much higher levels along the river than normal. City Light operates three dams on the upper Skagit River. If the utility had followed its regular, licensed flow requirements below the dams, an estimated 2-4 percent of the chinook nests would have been left high and dry - nests that in the future would produce about 900 returning adults.

City Light environmental and power management staff developed and carried out a plan to protect 90 percent of the at-risk nests by increasing minimum flows during incubation and hatching. Fisheries agencies and tribes applauded the approach.

"Seattle is proud of City Light's achievements in salmon restoration on the Skagit," said City Councilmember Jean Godden, who accepted the award for the utility, along with City Light Power Supply Officer John Prescott. "We are pleased to be working in collaboration with other stakeholders on the river to protect and restore salmon, and we look forward to continuing our work together," Godden said.

City Light Superintendent Jorge Carrasco credited City Light fisheries biologists Dave Pflug and Ed Connor and operations planner Phillip Irvin for developing the flow plan for the utility.

Shared Strategy for Puget Sound is a coalition of federal, state, and local government agencies, tribes, environmental groups and businesses. It was formed in response to the listing of Puget Sound chinook salmon as a threatened species. The award was presented to City Light at the Shared Strategy summit meeting held this week in Tacoma.

 

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