Streamkeepers tackle Climate!

WaterWealth really had no role in the water bottling issue in the Chilliwack River Valley, other than to respond to requests for information (see blog post "A Win for Local Organizing"). Coincidentally though, we may soon be spending a lot more time in the Chilliwack River watershed with a new climate monitoring program!onset_mx2201.jpg

Inspired by the work of US Forest Service Research Fish Biologist Dan Isaak and enabled by the introduction of research-grade temperature loggers at significantly lower cost and greater ease of use than previous models. Once funding is confirmed and pending input and go-ahead from the Ts’elxwéyeqw Tribe in whose territory the program is proposed to take place, we will begin monitoring hourly temperatures of the Chilliwack River and 30+ tributaries.

Temperature records will be supplemented with seasonal water quality data at each location. In-depth surveys of riparian areas, stream substrate, invertebrates and fish will be conducted on a subset of streams. As the project evolves we anticipate adding more monitoring sites up some of the subwatersheds. All data will be public, and will be proactively shared, such as with the Chilliwack River hatchery who are interested in water quality data from some locations.

The goal is to help build as complete a picture as possible of the effects of climate change. Accumulated data can aid land and water use planning and targeting of scarce conservation dollars. Along the way we will be reaching out for shared learning with groups already doing similar monitoring around the province, and to help others get started in watersheds where no such monitoring currently exists.

WaterWealth is also continuing to work with Pearson Ecological on projects in the Chilliwack Area, including the habitat monitoring project that will culminate in a new module for the Pacific Streamkeepers Federation manual. That module will be rolled out province-wide to enable robust and cost-effective community monitoring of habitat compensation and enhancement projects.

usfs_upriver_logjams.jpgFor a beautiful exploration of habitat restoration you can watch Freshwater Illustrated’s film “UPRIVER” free until April 15, 2019. UPRIVER looks at one of the most active river conservation movements in the U.S., from the headwaters to the mouth of Oregon’s Willamette River system. The waters wind through forests, farms, and urban areas, shaped by geologic and human history, in many ways similar to streams and rivers throughout the Pacific Northwest.

The film might inspire you to get hands-on in a habitat enhancement project, and as it happens, we’re looking for volunteers! Saturday, March 30, enjoy the beauty of the Chilliwack River Valley and help with planting along Wingfield Creek in a habitat enhancement project with Pearson Ecological and Fraser Valley Conservancy. A recent survey right where we’ll be working found coho salmon, cutthroat and rainbow trout, lots of salamanders, and a red-legged frog!


Special Donation Request


WaterWealth depends on support of people who recognize the importance of public
participation in planning and decision making that affects our shared home waters.





The Fraser Watershed Restoration Conference 2019 was to bring together Indigenous leaders,
industry experts, government representatives, academics, community officials and conservationists
interested in advancing watershed restoration, and reconciliation with First Nations.

With a number of federal and BC government ministers on the speakers list, WaterWealth
planned to attend to ensure a grassroots community presence at this important
inaugural event of the Fraser Watershed Initiative. While the conference website
doesn't say so presently, we received word that the conference has been cancelled.

Response to the donation request to enable us to attend the conference has been very generous!
We are very grateful for and encouraged by the show of support that response represents. We will
confirm with the conference organizers whether the conference is truly cancelled or whether it might
be rescheduled. We will contact those who have donated toward this special request, to see about
their wishes for these donations, whether refund, or perhaps hold till a later date for the conference,
or put toward other programs. Of course should the reader feel moved to donate to support our work
aside from this conference, donations are always very gratefully received!


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