Julie Turrini

Large dam on Klamath River

Dam removal supports California’s 30×30 goals

OPINION published in Capitol Weekly, November 7, 2023, by Julie Turrini – California has hundreds of outdated dams, small and large, that no longer serve a function. These obsolete dams litter our rivers and streams, block fish passage, and create costly liabilities to communities. We need to accelerate our pace of dam removal as a nature-based strategy for restoring freshwater systems and preparing for increasing threats from climate change. Dam removal fits nicely within California’s effort to protect 30 percent of its land and coastal waters by 2030 (30×30). After all, rivers and streams connect the land to the coast and along the…

Kwoneesum Dam

Partnership and Vision Restoring Abundance to Tomorrow’s Rivers

In the last few years, we’ve witnessed what is becoming a profound change across the American West. Obsolete dams are coming down. Streams are being restored. Tribes are reconnecting with the fish runs of their ancestors. Irrigation diversions are easier to manage. And water is cleaner.   If one follows the water through our nation’s rivers, the removal of these dams might look like isolated incidents. But the individual acts are adding up to a significant whole, and momentum is growing. Change like this doesn’t happen overnight. It takes careful planning, prudent investment, smart partnerships, and effective tools.   Thanks to…

Missoula offers momentum on Rattlesnake Dam removal

With work to remove Missoula’s Rattlesnake Creek Dam now underway, it’s a good time to call attention to the inspiring local partnerships that led to this. There are lessons that can apply across the West. The 60-foot-long dam, in place since 1904, will be removed and the creek restored, giving bull trout, westslope cutthroat and other species renewed access to miles of spawning habitat. While dam removals are occurring with increasing frequency, this project is remarkable in how it came about and what may come of it. My colleagues and I at Resources Legacy Fund have had the good fortune…