Clackamas Environment Services Awards $300K in Grants to Protect Watersheds

Clackamas Water Environment Services is awarding $300,000 in grants to 11 organizations dedicated to the protection of local watersheds through its RiverHealth Stewardship Program.

The grants will support a variety of activities that restore habitat, manage invasive plant species, organize community volunteer events, provide watershed science education, and remove trash from waterways while enhancing water quality.

Bob’s Red Mill will receive $27,000 to restore 4.5 acres of wetlands in the Mount Scott Creek watershed by removing invasive species and litter and installing native plants. The project will include an employee work event and installation of of bird boxes.

The Clackamas River Basin Council will receive $30,000 will improve and protect six acres of riparian habitat and 1,200 feet of river and stream on two new sites along Sieben Creek and main stem of the Clackamas River. The project also includes stewardship classes and volunteer work parties.

The Columbia Land Trust and Portland Audubon will receive $17,250 for its Backyard Habitat Certification Program, which works with residents to reduce or eliminate use of pesticides, remove priority weeds, and plant native vegetation. These actions keep synthetic chemicals out of streams, cool the land and water, and help pollinators and birds survive and thrive.

Friends of Trees will receive $30,000 to build upon previous restoration efforts and volunteer engagement in the Rock Creek watershed, conduct outreach to recruit future restoration properties and engage youth through hands-on environmental education.

This project will include volunteer plantings at Mitchell Creek (Johnson Creek watershed) and Rock Creek Headwaters.

The Happy Valley Heights homeowners association will receive $27,903 to collaborate on riparian and streamside treatments to restore watershed health in Happy Valley. This work will also be coordinated with the larger Watershed Action Plan for Mount Scott Creek, with support from the North Clackamas Watersheds Council.

The Johnson Creek Watershed Council will receive $28,620 to engage more than 200 volunteers in stewardship or educational activities. The council will conduct the annual Johnson Creek Cleanup, Watershed Wide event at the Mitchell Creek site, and Science in the Park.

North Clackamas School District will receive $16,035 to connect students and community to the benefits of improving watershed health. The project will include class visits, art projects, volunteer cleanup and planting events, and student work parties with Sabin Schellenberg Career and Technical Center for Forestry and Natural Resources.

North Clackamas Watersheds Council will receive $29,992 to expand its riparian restoration program to 80 acres, focusing on contiguous habitat in Mount Scott Creek, lowering stream temperature, reducing erosion, and improving water quality.

This project will also expand online workshops that build landowner understanding of watershed function into the field, and build knowledge of how actions on one property affect the watershed as a whole.

The Rivers of Life Center will receive $25,000 to unify elements of a three-year investment at Eagle’s Landing, enhancing an existing riparian and educational corridor.

Work will include adding native plants, which will provide cover to streams damaged by the 2021 ice storm and heat dome, removing English Ivy, establishing denning areas for native animals and nesting platforms for raptors.

The Wetlands Conservancy will receive $28,250 to provide stewardship at Hearthwood Wetlands, enhancing more acreage over previous efforts. The project will work with Wisdom of the Elders to utilize traditional ecological knowledge and engage volunteers to weed, plant, and pick up trash at this Kellogg Creek headwaters.

The Tualatin River Watershed Council will receive $29,950 to address limiting factors such as high water temperatures, low dissolved oxygen and elevated suspended sediments by engaging with private landowners on four tributaries of the Lower Tualatin River to remove invasive plant species and plant native vegetation.

The project will also conduct eDNA sampling to determine if Pacific lamprey, steelhead, Coho, or cutthroat utilize these tributaries.

Finally, the World Salmon Council will receive $10,000 to implement Salmon Watch, a unique environmental education program that combines classroom and online curriculum, field learning, and community service, incorporating innovative learning activities designed to enhance students’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Additionally, the project enables students to explore their natural heritages and develop a sense of stewardship and future career exploration through learning about watershed health and the lifecycle and habitat needs of Northwest salmon.

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