NOAA Fisheries released a final biological opinion on May 5, 2008, on the operation of the Federal Columbia River Power System for salmon and steelhead listed under the Endangered Species Act.
NOAA Fisheries finds that with the actions in the Reasonable and Prudent Alternative (RPA), the BiOp meets the law’s requirement to protect fish and improves their prospects for recovery.
Salmon are endangered because of problems with habitat, harvest and hatcheries as well as the hydropower system. The solution must address all these problems as well. The RPA:
q Identifies high standards for survival of juvenile fish through the dams
q Specifies hydrosystem spill and operations timed to the needs of individaul species
q Expands the habitat program
q Expands the predation management program
q Sets specific commitments and timetables for stie-specific hatchery consultations and reforms
The BiOp analysis is based on the best available science and validated by independent science reviews.