[Vision2020] Safeguarding Rivers

Moscow Cares moscowcares at moscow.com
Sun Jan 14 03:25:32 PST 2018

Courtesy of today’s (January 14, 2018) Lewiston Tribune with special thanks to Brett Haverstick.


Safeguarding Rivers

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act and the Wild and Scenic National Rivers System.

This historic federal legislation sharply contrasted with the dam-building and water-diversion ethos that dominated policy decisions throughout much of the 20th century. The law enables rivers to be protected in a free-flowing condition, while recognizing the outstanding remarkable values the water body and its immediate environment possess.

Eight rivers were initially protected in 1968. Half of those are in Idaho, and three out of the four are located in the Clearwater Basin of north central Idaho: Lochsa River, Selway River and Middle Fork Clearwater. The other is the Middle Fork Salmon.

That is an incredible statistic considering all the rivers in our country that are eligible for protection when the system was created.

Today, this law protects portions of the St. Joe River and the main stem Salmon River, along with a few other rivers in the state.

Shockingly, there is not a single mile of water in the entire North Fork Clearwater and South Fork Clearwater included in our nation's system. The same can be said for every mile of the Clearwater between Kooskia and Lewiston.

Permanent protection for the lower Salmon River and its corridor remains elusive.

Fewer than 1 percent of all rivers in Idaho are protected under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Only Congress can add more river segments to our national system. Contact them about passing legislation to protect more of our heritage.

Brett Haverstick 


Seeya 'round town, Moscow, because . . .

"Moscow Cares" (the most fun you can have with your pants on)
Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho
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