Columbia River Mainstem Fish Tissue and Water Quality Monitoring Program

Project abstract: 

In 2020, Yakama Nation was successful in securing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Columbia River Basin Restoration Program (CRBRP) funding to begin Phase 1 of a multi-phased, multi-year project to develop a Fish Tissue and Water Quality Monitoring Program (Monitoring Program) along the approximately 600-mile length of the Middle and Upper Columbia River mainstem to assess and track status and trends of contaminants in fish, water, sediments and invertebrates from the Canadian Border to Bonneville Dam. Yakama Nation is partnering with the Columbia River Intertribal Fisheries Commission (CRITFC), Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology), Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ), and U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Phase 1 work included engaging stakeholders, developing a Monitoring Framework to inform development of the overall Monitoring Program, and developing and conducting community engagement and outreach for an Outreach Messaging Framework. 

In 2022, Yakama Nation submitted two additional EPA CRBRP grant proposals for a Phase 2 Pilot Study in the Bonneville Pool, an approximately 50-mile stretch of the Columbia River (Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam). The Pilot Study will sample for key toxics in fish (resident fish and adult/juvenile salmon), sediment, and potentially surface water (budget-dependent). In addition, this work will include planning, outreach and QAPP development for the long-term Columbia River Mainstem Monitoring Program (Bonneville Dam to Canadian Border), as well as continue efforts to identify a lead agency, program strategy, data management system and hosts of data.

Phase 3 will see implementation of the Long-Term Monitoring Program.

Project goals: 

Implementation of a Long-Term Monitoring Program to track the status and trends of toxics in fish, water, sediments, and invertebrates in the Columbia River mainstem from Bonneville Dam to the Canada border.

More Projects of Columbia River Mainstem Monitoring Program:

Related Announcements:

EPA, 2022:

EPA, 2020:

Project Photos:

  • Figure 1. The study area for the Columbia River Fish Tissue and Water Quality Monitoring Program that encompasses the Columbia River (purple) from Bonneville Dam (rkm 234) to the U.S. border with Canada (rkm 1196). Major salmonid bearing tributaries are also depicted (blue).