The Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment welcomes applications for its Columbia River Fund.
The Columbia River watershed extends from the Canadian Rockies in British Columbia to the Pacific Ocean near Astoria, Oregon. Historically, the Columbia River has supported one of the greatest salmon and steelhead runs on Earth, and up until about 1840, 16 million salmon and steelhead would return to the Columbia River to spawn each year. These massive salmon runs, along with other fish and wildlife populations, historically supported, and continue to sustain, rich Native American cultures and traditions across the entire Columbia River basin.
Although the Columbia River salmon fishery still supports thousands of commercial and sport fishermen and many millions of dollars of beneficial economic activity, both on the river and along the Pacific Coast, today only about 6 percent of the historic fishery remains. Dams logging, water diversions for agriculture, industrial and municipal pollution, and human population growth have also altered the Columbia’s flow regime and water quality, reducing the water quality and quality habitat values across the entire river basin. Water quality has been further degraded by seepage from toxic waste dumps and agricultural and stormwater runoff. Most recently, the Columbia River faces the fresh threat of pollution associated with coal, oil, and gas transportation and generation.
Through its Columbia River Fund, the Rose Foundation will award grants of up to $25,000 in support of projects designed to improve or protect clean water and aquatic habitat and benefit the Columbia River Basin. The foundation will prioritize projects in the main stem of the Columbia River, from Richland downstream to its mouth at Astoria, and the upper Columbia River around Wenatchee and Malaga in Chelan County.
Examples of eligible projects include water quality monitoring and testing, including sediment impact analysis (especially if the project also includes an element that uses the data to promote enhanced water quality); legal strategies, policy development, and associated public outreach directed toward protecting the watershed and impacted communities; community organizing; and public/environmental education to protect water quality and prevent degradation of the watershed.
To be eligible, applicants must be tax exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, fiscally sponsored by an organization with such status, or a governmental or tribal entity.
See the Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment website for complete program guidelines and application instructions.