Newspaper Archive of
Hells Canyon Journal
Halfway, Oregon
June 6, 2001     Hells Canyon Journal
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June 6, 2001

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Page 5 Hells Canyon Journal June 6, 2001 Guest Opinion Improving Snake River Water Quality by Joni Hammond and Steve West It is the goal of the federal Clean Water Act to provide Americans with surface wa- ters that are safe for swim- ming and recreation, and which support healthy fish populations. The Clean Wa- ter Act also requires states to adopt and enforce water qual- ity standards that protect these and other "designated beneficial uses." Unfortu- nately, excess pollution is jeopardizing designated ben- eficial uses in the Snake River basin. To help protect those uses, the Oregon and Idaho De- partments of Environmental Quality are working with a local public advisory team on a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) water quality report and management plan for the Snake River between Adrian, Oregon, and the Salmon River. These efforts will im- prove water quality in the Snake River basin. The Snake River-Hells Canyon TMDL will determine the maximum amounts of various pollutants that can be present in the Snake River without violating Oregon or Idaho water quality stan- dards. It will also determine how much of these pollutants are currently in the river and set goals on how much each needs to be reduced. The wa- ter quality management plan, also known as an implemen- tation plan, that will be in- cluded with the TMDL will outline how all sources of pol- lution in the basifi can meet the pollution reduction goals set in the TMDL. Although the federal government - not the states - ultimately ap- proves TMDLs, the states of Oregon and Idaho, the Snake River-Hells Canyon public advisory team, and interested members of the public develop the TMDLs and have consid- erable control in determining how pollution reduction goals for the Snake River basin will be met. Improving water quality will have a cost for just about everyone in the basin. Farm- ers and ranchers will be asked to continue working to create and implement land manage- ment plans that reduce pol- lutant run-off from farms and ranches. Municipalities and industry will have to reduce or have cleaner wastewater and storm drain discharges. Foresters will be asked to con- tinue to use best management practices to protect water quality. Dams will need to be operated and managed to improve water quality im- pacts, and city, county and state transportation manag- ers will need to make sure their maintenance and con- struction practices are sensitive to wa- , ter quality issues. Some people in the basin, who may be asked to shoulder a share of the cost of improving water quality, are con- cerned the process is moving too fast. It is important to under- stand, however, that if the states of Or- egon and Idaho and the Snake River- Hells Canyon public advisory team do not act in a timely man- ner to protect water quality in the Snake River basin, the fed- eral government will be forced to inter- vene. Federal inter- vention could mean considerably less lo- cal input and control than is being sought in the current bE- state process. Water quality in the Snake River has been in decline for decades and it may be decades more be- fore improvements to water quality will be seen. However, by focusing resources on effective and effi- cient restoration practices and by making sure that lo- cal economic con- Story Idea? If you have an idea for a news story or a feature article, the Hells Canyon Journal wants to hear from you. Call us at 742-7900 and tell us all about it. Send your idea, together with names of people to con- tact and pictures (if available) to this address: Hells Canyon Journal P.O. Box 646 Hah ay, OR 97884 cerns are part of the long- term water quality improve- ment effort, we can and will see improved water quality in the Snake River basin. (Joni Hammond is the Eastern Region Administra- tor for the Oregon DEQ. Steve West is the Regional Admin- istrator for the Boise Region of the Idaho DEQ. The Snake River-Hells Canyon TMDL and water quality manage- ment plan are scheduled for completion by December 2001. For more information, contact Scott Fairley, Oregon DEQ, at (541) 975-1129.) New this yeorl Physician Break-Out Sessions 8:30am Michael Rushton, DPM Happy Feet How to Make Your Feet Happy. 9:30am Barbara Tytka, MD Colon Cancer Screening Indicators for Colon Cancer Screening and changes in Medicare that go into effect July 1. The 11.2 10:30am Marc Iseri, MD Urinary Incontinence topic no one wants to discuss, this billion dollar problem affects over 15 million Americans. 11:30am Laurence [zvinger, MD Breast Cancer Overview of Diagnosis and Treatment of Breast Cancer. 12:30pro Robert McKim, MD Ordinary Heai~ Lifestyles of Healthy People. 1:301 Robert Hill, MD He//ca/Scanner An exciting new piece of equipment coming to St. Elizabeth and how it will be used to help our community. Windmerem 16" Stand Fan 3 speed, adj. neck, 9& oscillation. Max 57' height. $14.99 AmesTM Hose Cart Plastic construction w/4' reinforced leader hose, ~ass couplings. Holds 150' of 5/8" hose. 17.88 ACETM Sprinklers Oscillating sprinkler or 2-pack impulse sprinklers. $4.88 Pennzoilm Fix-A-Flat Seals most punctures and inflates tires fast! $2.99 St. Elizabeth Health Services Presents: "Helping to Build a Healthier Community" For tee Cbildrem: • Life Flight Helicopter Tour • Smoke-Safety House • Free Face Painting • Child I.DJFingerprinting Station • Free Balloons Booths for All Ages: • Body Fat Analysis • EKG/Pulse Oximet • Diabetes Education • Better Breather's Club • Home Health & Hospice • Pharmaceutical • Medical Supplies • Blood Pressure • Refractive Eye Surgery • Vision Sczeening (10am-Norm) Baker Vision Clinic • Dr. Int etation of Blood results • Auxiliary Bake Sale • Volunteer Faire • Free Water Bottles...& much more! Saturday, JUNE 16 8:00am-2:00pm r High School For more information contact Denise Van Artsdalen at 523-8102 + CATHOLIC HEALTH INITIATIVES ,t qm~ ~f mmm~. d, qpq ’ ~,.