Since 1998, Washington Water Trust (WWT) has been restoring healthy and sustainable flows in our state’s rivers and streams for fish, farms, people and wildlife. To date, WWT has improved flows-even in drought-years- along more than 550 miles of stream and secured upwards of 28.28 billion gallons of water to remain instream.
Across Washington state, society's demand for water is exceeding supply. That, coupled with Climate Change, means our water supply is declining at an accelerating rate in basins such as the Yakima, Walla Walla, Wenatchee, Okanogan, Dungeness and Skagit. In late summer, when people, fish and wildlife need cool, ample flows the most, many Washington streams run low if not dry. Low water flow threatens the waters that frame our very identity in the Pacific Northwest. Extinction looms for salmon and steelhead across the state. Plants and wildlife suffer. Our natural systems become less resilient to the effects of Climate Change. Recreational opportunities dry-up with the streams and agricultural production is limited.
The water challenges we face are complex and the solutions critical-which is why WWT brings land owners, businesses, municipalities, environmental groups, tribes, lawmakers and investors together to develop water management strategies that are smart and enduring. WWT may help a landowner design more efficient irrigation methods, change the time or place of water diversion, or purchase and lease water in order to protect instream flow during critical migration, spawning or rearing seasons for ESA listed species.