The time has come to
FREE the EEL!
California’s best chance for a wild and free river
One of California’s largest rivers, with salmon runs once nearing one million fish, the Wild and Scenic Eel River has the potential to serve as a stronghold for wild salmon and steelhead, many of which are now threatened or endangered.
An economic driver
Commercial salmon fishing was once a significant North Coast economic driver but collapsing fish populations have all but eliminated those economic opportunities. Restoring a free-flowing Eel River from the heights of Snow Mountain to the redwoods of the Lost Coast is key to supporting widespread salmon recovery.
Restorative Justice for local tribes
The Round Valley Indian Tribes, the Wiyot Tribe, and other Indian nations have long depended on the Eel River and the salmon, steelhead, and pacific lamprey it provides as a traditional food source and for other subsistence purposes. These resources remain central to tribal cultural identity and hold ceremonial significance. Restoring the Eel and recovering these native fish is one way to address historical wrongs perpetrated against our Indigenous neighbors.
Time for 21st century solutions
The Potter Valley Project completely blocks fish passage to the headwaters of the Eel River watershed. Research shows that allowing salmon and steelhead to access that habitat is essential to their recovery. Numerous studies show it is feasible for people to reap the benefits the project provides even after the dams are removed. We can have a healthy environment and water, too.