Puyallup River
Puyallup River

#4: Puyallup River, WA

Threat: Outdated dam management

Century old dam threatens salmon runs

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Electron Dam on Puyallup River | Photo by National Park Service

Electron Dam | Photo by National Park Service

The Puyallup River flows from Mount Rainier and supports many species of fish and wildlife. It also provides critical resources for the Puyallup Tribe of Indians, the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe and local communities. Chinook salmon are a keystone species and part of the social and ecological fabric of the region—their spawning and migration support the entire web of life in the Puyallup River. Chinook also are the primary food source for critically endangered Southern Resident orcas. But Chinook, wild steelhead and bull trout—all protected as threatened under the Endangered Species Act—are in steep decline due to outdated management practices at the Electron Dam in Pierce County, Washington. The National Marine Fisheries Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should ensure that all three fish species can recover by enforcing the requirements of the Endangered Species Act and demanding expedited correction of the fish-killing aspects of the Electron Hydropower Project.

American Rivers appreciates the collaboration and efforts of our partners:

  • Puyallup & Chambers Watersheds
  • Puget Sound Partnership
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