In 2009, Trout Unlimited launched the Washington Water Project—the latest state office in a regional program that also includes Colorado, California, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming and Montana. The Western Water Project works to enhance stream flows and healthy fish habitat. To jumpstart WWP efforts in the state, TU acquired the Washington Rivers Conservancy, a nonprofit conservation group that has worked for years on water rights and streamflow issues.
The new WWP program comes at a crucial time for Washington: As in other Western states, a host of pressures, from population growth to climate change, is challenging the state's ability to ensure sufficient water for a variety of purposes, including agriculture, fisheries and power generation. That's especially true in the semi-arid eastern half of the state.
In the face of these challenges, the Washington Water Project advocates for collaborative, commonsense water planning solutions that balance the needs of communities, farms and ranches with the health of rivers, fish and wildlife habitat. We partner with ranchers and landowners to restore damaged streams and watersheds, advocate for more flexible, habitat-friendly water laws, and educate the public about the need to sustain healthy rivers and streams. Meet our staff.
The Washington Water Project pursues three key strategies:
|Protect the best fish habitat
Washington staff work to ensure that the state's best trout habitat - and the outstanding recreational opportunities they afford - are protected from water withdrawals and development.
Restore rivers and streams
Over the years, important river and stream habitat in Washington has been dewatered and fragmented by diversions, overgrazing and development. We are partnering with individual landowners, agencies and local communities to put the pieces of our watersheds back together. »Read more
Promote habitat-friendly water policy
We work with lawmakers, rural communities and water stakeholders to promote far-sighted, effective water policy that improves the health of rivers and streams while enhancing agriculture operations and property values. »Read more