Watershed Restoration

Russian River instream flow and restoration

SCWA currently operates the Russian River Instream Flow and Restoration (RRIFR) program and has proposed a North San Pablo Bay Restoration and Reuse project as part of its commitment to watershed restoration. Both efforts are designed to minimize and mitigate the environmental impact of SCWA’s operations.

Russian River Instream Flow and Restoration (RRIFR)

The Russian River Instream Flow and Restoration Project (RRIFR) is a fifteen year program to implement a biological opinion mandated by the National Marine Fisheries Service. With help from state and federal partners, the Agency will make changes to its operations to protect threatened and endangered fish in the Russian River and its tributaries. RRIFR encompasses the following changes:

  • Reducing summer time flow in the Russian River
  • Enhancing habitats in Dry Creek
  • Changing the management of the estuary where the Russian River meets the Pacific Ocean
  • Supplementing a regional restoration hatchery at Warm Springs Dam

The Agency holds numerous RRIFR public meetings to increase community outreach. For past public meeting presentations and for more information on this effort, visit the Agency’s RRIFR website.

North San Pablo Bay Restoration and Reuse Project

The proposed North San Pablo Bay Restoration and Reuse Project would reduce SCWA’s reliance on local and imported surface and groundwater and reduce discharges to San Pablo Bay by providing recycled water for agricultural, urban, and environmental uses.

If approved, the project would promote increased use of recycled water in Sonoma County's North Bay region and fulfill the following objectives:

  • Offset urban and agricultural demands on potable supplies
  • Enhance local and regional ecosystems
  • Improve local and regional water supply reliability
  • Maintain and protect public health and safety
  • Promote sustainable practices
  • Prioritize local needs for recycled water
  • Implement recycled water facilities in an economically viable manner.
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