At the Nov. 1st board meeting, EWEB Commissioners got an update on the budget and rates for next year and the EWEB quarterly report.Find Out More
Imagine if heavy snowfall and freezing rain hit Eugene this winter. Imagine damaged trees, road closures and widespread power outages. What would you do?Find Out More
Hundreds of landowners in the McKenzie River valley are working with EWEB to prevent future fires and protect the river by replanting burned properties and removing fuels like dead trees and underbrush.Find Out More
By partnering with ShakeAlert and the Oregon Hazards Lab, EWEB gets an early warning of the effects of earthquakes on hydropower facilities.Find Out More
EWEB works with watershed researchers, forest management agencies and local non-profits to identify threats to our water supply and public health, prioritize watershed restoration activities and help with long-term community recovery.Find Out More
EWEB held its Poster Contest for 5th grade students in our service territory for Public Power Week, October 2-8, receiving more than 100 entries from classrooms across the area.Find Out More
EWEB conducted a multi-agency spill drill on the Willamette River this week. The practice session was to help refresh and hone skills that will be essential to respond to an actual disaster involving an oil spill in the Willamette.Find Out More
EWEB's elected Board of Commissioners has voted to authorize General Manager Frank Lawson to pursue and negotiate the sale of the former EWEB headquarters building.Find Out More
EWEB’s Source Water Champions work year-round to protect our drinking water. They take water quality samples throughout the watershed, help our neighbors be better stewards, and coordinate multi-agency teams for restoration work and hazard mitigation.Find Out More
Local middle school students from around the area learned about the entire life cycle of salmon along the McKenzie River at Salmon Watch 2022, which was held at the EWEB spawning channel. The field trip took place during peak salmon spawning season, when fish that are at least two feet long are reaching the end of their journey from the ocean to their natal streams.Find Out More
EWEB is bringing back our annual poster contest for Public Power Week, and needs your help to select our top 5 winners!Find Out More
EWEB’s electric safety trailer is an interactive tool for the public to learn how to react in a potentially dangerous situation.Find Out More
Eugene’s first black-owned house generates clean energy and community connectionsFind Out More
We are working to ensure our systems are ready to perform through extreme heat. Check out tips and resources to help you stay safe and comfortable while conserving energy.Find Out More
At this rodeo, power poles take the place of bulls and electric workers stand in for cowboys.Find Out More
On a chilly November day, third graders from Adams Elementary School in Eugene learned about the lifecycle of native salmon on a field trip to Lake Creek near Triangle Lake. The field trips take place all month as part of a program funded by EWEB grants. EWEB dedicates a portion of customer rates to inspiring kids to explore the wonders of science and learn about watershed health, water quality, and emergency preparedness.
“Oncorhynchus tshawytscha… so this is the scientific name for Chinook Salmon…and it comes from the idea that the male’s nose is hooked,” Tana Shepard said to an attentive group of 8-year-olds. “So, it comes from a Greek word…”
The group of third-grade students gathered around teacher Tana Shepard under an awning set up on the creek banks. She showed them photos of Chinook salmon and explained they’ve traveled from the ocean to their spawning grounds here at Lake Creek.
Nearby, in the water, we saw several adult salmon who’ve made the 60-mile journey to this tributary of the Siuslaw River.
“So, if you look out into the rocks… and watch, don’t get too far out,” Shepard warned. “It’ll be a long, cold foot day.” “I have boots,” one student replied “So friends, listen carefully, do you see how there are 2 white shapes out there?” Shepard asked.
Shepard pointed out two female salmon in the creek. She explained that the females are laying eggs, the males fertilize them.
Shepard said this is the most salmon she’s seen come back to this creek since she started leading these field trips 6 years ago. Out here, students get to see salmon in the wild and learn about the lifecycle of this keystone species:
“That if that species disappears from the ecosystem then the ecosystem falls apart,” said Shepard. “Salmon, in particular, are just so important in the freshwater and saltwater environments and that’s really unique for them. So, having the kids learn about that and start to care deeply about a species that they’re raising in their classroom is really cool.”
The students are also raising salmon eggs in class. The salmon education program involves 30 different 4J schools and includes grades 1st-12th. Shepard and three other teachers lead these field trips for 3rd and 4th graders throughout November.
“And we use this trip to connect what they’re learning at school to the lifecycle here and what’s happening at the spawning stage,” Shepard said.
Shepard said the pandemic put these excursions on hiatus, and for the students and some of the teachers this is their first school field trip. She said the chance for students to experience hands on learning and engage in science is invaluable.
“It’s a proponent for getting kids outside more often… and so, I love being outside so sharing that passion with them makes this even better,” Shepard said.
Shepard shared that one student tugged on her elbow during a recent salmon field trip and said this was a once in a lifetime experience.
Shepard’s work is funded by EWEB grants. The 4J/ EWEB Education Partnership is an environmental science program that supports learning opportunities around climate change and its effects in the Pacific Northwest.
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