Protecting Our Watershed
Unlike the City of Portland’s protected Bull Run watershed, the Clackamas is a multi-use watershed with various users and ownership throughout the watershed.
Each time it rains or snows, pollutants wash off the land and flow untreated into nearby surface and groundwater sources. Because all water in a watershed is connected activities in one part of the watershed often affect other areas. A healthy watershed stores and filters water, stabilizes banks, provides shade and habitat for fish and other aquatic life.
Human activities such as construction, timber harvesting, live stock management, fertilizer and pesticide use if not performed responsibly can degrade water quality. In addition impervious surfaces such as parking lots, roads, and roofs carry pollutants directly to our streams and natural water ways. Therefore, the combination of cars, homes, people, and animals in the watershed makes pollution from stormwater a serious threat to our river’s water quality.
Enhancing watershed health requires understanding your watershed and taking appropriate action as needed to eliminate or control polluting activities. While good water quality may be difficult to see, a rich variety of plants and animals, from aquatic insects to cutthroat trout, indicate a healthy watershed and clean water.
We all play a role in preserving our vital drinking water resource. Whether you’re a resident, business owner, employee or farmer, you can make a difference. Protecting and conserving our drinking water plays a key role in making the best overall use of the precious resource we share.