Murray, Cantwell Announce Investment for Pacific Salmon Recovery

Senators fought to ensure Washington state salmon recovery was a national priority

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) announced a $28 million investment for the restoration of Pacific salmon. Murray and Cantwell fought to ensure Washington state’s salmon recovery efforts were a national priority in the Senate Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations bill for fiscal year 2011.

“Pacific salmon are an economic driver in the Pacific Northwest,” Cantwell said. “This program provides critical funding to facilitate the recovery and sustainability of Pacific salmon populations, and the commercial and recreational industries that rely on them for their livelihood. I thank Senator Murray for her support and leadership in helping secure this funding, and I will continue working to support efforts to protect our state’s wild, endangered salmon populations.”

“Salmon are part of our heritage, our culture, and our economy in the Pacific Northwest—and this investment is going to help make sure we are maintaining that,” said Senator Patty Murray. “I will continue to work with Senator Cantwell and communities across our state to successfully restore Washington state’s salmon runs and help preserve this Pacific Northwest way of life.”

The investment going to Washington state will support local watershed habitat restoration and protection projects funded through the Salmon Recovery Funding Board (SRFB). Additional investments will go toward the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission for various hatchery and harvest reform related projects, as well as salmon monitoring efforts throughout the state. 

The Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund (PCSRF) was estab­lished by Congress in fiscal year 2000 to protect, restore and conserve Pacific salmon populations and their habitats, and to address the impacts of the Pacific Salmon Treaty Agreement between the United States and Canada. PCSRF supports the conservation and recovery of Pacific salmon across the rivers, watersheds and coastal habitats they thrive in across Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Idaho, Nevada, and California. Since its inception, PCSRF has supported 8,000 projects restoring 700,000 acres of salmon and steelhead habitat and opening 4,400 miles of streams to fish passage.

PCSRF funding for Washington state has been utilized by state, local and tribal entities to restore and protect salmon habitat, conduct watershed assessments, develop local restoration and management plans, and conduct research to monitor, evaluate and support salmon conservation and recovery. For more than a decade, PCSRF has provided an important source of stable funding allow­ing project managers to assess, plan, implement, and monitor a comprehensive network of habitat improvement and salmonid management projects.