Opening of Port Angeles Water Treatment Plant and Elwha Water Facilities is Milestone towards Elwha River Restoration in Olympic National Park

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   April 2, 2010
Contact:   David G. Graves, National Parks Conservation Association, 206-910-1570


Opening of Port Angeles Water Treatment Plant and Elwha Water Facilities is Milestone towards Elwha River Restoration in Olympic National Park

Statement by NPCA Northwest Field Representative David Graves

“The National Parks Conservation Association today celebrates the grand opening of the Port Angeles Water Treatment Plant and Elwha Water Facilities in Washington State. The construction of these two facilities is one of the last steps required before removal of the two dams on the Elwha River can move ahead and the restoration of the Elwha River’s ecosystem can begin.

“The two water treatment plants will protect water users from the sand, gravel and rocks that will flow downstream upon removal of the Elwha and Glines Canyon Dams. This sediment has been accumulating behind the two dams since their construction.  The facilities will take in surface water for treatment and provide clean water for municipal, industrial, and hatchery needs.

“The Elwha River Restoration Project will return the river to its natural, free-flowing state, allowing 10 different species of fish, including five Pacific salmon stocks and steelhead, to once again reach habitat and spawning grounds. As the largest watershed in Olympic National Park, the restoration of the Elwha River salmon runs will return vital nutrients to the water and help restore the park’s ecosystem. Park scientists estimate that 22 species of wildlife, including bald eagles, black bears and river otters, have declined because of a lack of salmon carcasses throughout the upper portions of the river.

“This critical project will help ensure that Olympic National Park is restored and protected for our children and grandchildren.”

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