Clackamas River Watershed Resilience Project
2017-2019

Over 300,000 people in Oregon depend on the Clackamas River Watershed for clean drinking water and other watershed services. The watershed includes federal forests, private timber land, agriculture, industry, rural residents and municipalities. A key challenge is how to bring together stakeholders with a diverse array of objectives to ensure the resilience of the watershed in the face of a changing climate, growing demands for services, requirements for fish and wildlife, and the livelihood needs of those who depend on the watershed.

The Clackamas River Watershed Resilience project was a multi-year project aimed to provide water resource stakeholders guidance for managing resilience in the face of climate change. Our community partners were the Clackamas River Water Providers and the Clackamas County Water and Environmental Services Department. Phase I of this project established a baseline of historical trends in the Clackamas River Watershed relevant to climate change and identify issues pertinent to stakeholders in the context of climate change (e.g., diminished summer water supply, water quality degradation resulting from urban development and intense rainfall, etc.). Phase II of the project looked at future climate scenarios and climate adaptation planning with stakeholders.

As part of a multidisciplinary team of scientists, my role was to conduct interviews with natural resource managers and planners in government agencies and local organizations to better understand attitudes regarding threats to water resources. In Phase II, I helped plan and run a stakeholder workshop for nearly 50 water and natural resource managers, elected officials and researchers with the goal of communicating scientific findings and fostering conversations about implications for planning and management decisions. 

 

You can read the project reports here.