The McKenzie watershed is comprised of 88% forested land, with a mixture of private, state and
federally owned lands.
Forested watersheds, like the McKenzie, produce better water quality than any other surface water source.
However, some forest management activities can adversely impact downstream water quality including:
- Aerial application of pesticides (greatest risk)
- Use of chemical applications to improve the growth of best trees and remove any trees in their way
- Road building and failures
- Various timber harvest techniques
EWEB is interested in working with forest landowners to help protect forests in the McKenzie Watershed.
The U.S. Forest Service owns more than 600,000 acres of forest land in the upper portion of the
McKenzie Watershed, or about two-thirds of the total watershed. Approximately 188,000 acres are owned
by private industrial timber companies, and another 70,000 acres by private non-industrial owners.
EWEB encourages best management forest practices that include adequate buffers on streams
and tributaries, as well as reduced chemical use where possible.
We have several ongoing initiatives designed to help protect forests in the McKenzie Watershed.
EWEB is developing a demonstration forest along the Leaburg Canal.
Learn where forest spraying occurs in the McKenzie Watershed.
EWEB is in the early stages of working with the Willamette National Forest
and a number of partners to initiate a "stewardship contracting" program in the McKenzie Watershed.
Stewardship contracting allows the Forest Service to enter into long-term contracts
to meet land-management objectives, such as reducing wildfire risk and improving forest health. Stewardship contracts
on timber sales in the McKenzie Watershed would allow the funds generated from the sale to remain in the watershed to fund other restoration
EWEB is an active member and supporter the Healthy Headwaters Alliance, which is a coalition of
water utilities, elected officials, land managers, scientists, conservationists, recreationists
and business leaders working to promote the health and resilience of headwaters that provide
water security to communities across the American West.
Email us for more information, or call Nancy Toth at 541-685-7438 or
Karl Morgenstern at 541-685-7365.