News Release Archive

Deschutes River Conservancy to Receive Interior's Cooperative Conservation Award

Media Contact: John Redding, (208) 378-5212,
Richard Rieber, (208) 378-5313,

For Release: May 09, 2007

The Deschutes River Conservancy was selected to receive the U.S. Department of the Interior's Cooperative Conservation Award for its many achievements in finding practical solutions to water management challenges in Oregon.

The DRC was nominated by the Bureau of Reclamation for its practical, incentive-based solutions to the basin's water management challenges and for its ability to produce quantifiable results. A total of 14 nominations were submitted to Interior.

The Secretary of the Interior will present the awards during a Departmental Convocation on May 9, in the Sidney R. Yates Auditorium in the Main Interior Building in Washington, DC.

The Cooperative Conservation Award recognizes achievements that involve collaborative activity among a diverse range of entities that may include Federal, State, local and Tribal governments, private for profit and nonprofit institutions, other non-governmental entities, and individuals.

During the 2006 irrigation season, DRC projects increased summer flows in the Middle Deschutes to record levels, achieving the 100 cubic-feet-per-second milestone for the first time since irrigators began diverting water from the river in 1899.

The DRC also implements a water conservation program and a water transfer program that have proven to be a valuable resource for irrigation districts in Central Oregon.

By way of the Central Oregon Water Bank, the DRC is able to facilitate a smooth transfer of water from irrigation districts to meet the needs of many Oregon communities, as well as the environmental needs of the Deschutes River.

Water banks in the Deschutes Basin help water users meet their water needs at a low cost to people and to the environment. The Groundwater Mitigation Bank restores streamflow and provides mitigation credits to new groundwater users. The Central Oregon Water Bank helps water users transfer existing water rights between different uses.

The DRC is a non-profit corporation that brings together federal, state, Tribal and local governments with private stakeholders to carry out basin-wide ecosystem restoration projects.

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