In February, 2011, the Northwest Power and Conservation Council (NPCC), which is responsible setting fish and wildlife mitigation priorities for the Bonneville Power Administration, adopted the Blackfoot Sub-basin Plan as part of its Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program.  The Sub-basin planning process, which was led by the Blackfoot Challenge and Trout Unlimited, was a collaborative process that involved dozens of individuals and assistance from state, local, and federal agencies and several non-governmental organizations. The effort took more than two years and hundreds of hours of volunteer effort.

`The Plan, which will assist the NPCC in setting mitigation funding priorities, does a number of things. It (1) identifies the goals for fish, wildlife and habitat; (2)defines the objectives that measure progress toward those goals; (3) establishes the strategies to meet those objectives;  and (4) incorporates much of the existing information related to fish and wildlife activities in a subbasin in a single document.   Because of the Blackfoot’s long history of collaborative conservation, the partners in the planning process were able to draw heavily on that history in completing the effort.

The value of this sub-basin plan is two-fold. First it captures, in a single document, the scope of the conservation effort in the Blackfoot, and provides a useful benchmark against which to measure our progress toward those conservation goals. Second, with the Sub-basin plan in place, conservation partners in the Blackfoot will be will be on strong footing when seeking BPA support of conservation efforts that embrace the mitigation goals of the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program.

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