An EWEB-supported program provides firewood for people affected by the 2020 Holiday Farm Fire. The McKenzie Firewood program was developed by Pure Water Partners (PWP) in 2021.Find Out More
At EWEB, we do what we can to help others in need. That’s been the reality for several of our electric and water crews over the past few weeks as we’ve responded to mutual aid requests for storm response and drinking water restoration, locally, and out of state.Find Out More
Despite an ice storm and a few windstorms in Eugene and the McKenzie Valley in the past few weeks, EWEB has so far fended off widespread weather-caused power outages – largely because of investments in year-round system maintenance and infrastructure improvements.Find Out More
EWEB has 800 miles of transmission and distribution lines transporting your drinking water underground throughout the city. It eventually comes out of your tap as delicious thirst-quenching water. But what goes into maintaining all those pipes? And what happens when one gets a leak? We went to find out.Find Out More
EWEB makes electric mobility available to anyhone though e-bike rebates, car sharing and grants for local organizations with electric mobility projects.Find Out More
Energy Efficiency tips to help you reduce your energy usage for National Cut your Energy Costs DayFind Out More
In response to a call for aid this week, EWEB’s water division jumped into action to assist the town of Mapleton after a leak in their water system left about 260 homes without running water.Find Out More
At Alton Baker Park this week, Eugene 4J elementary students bid farewell to baby salmon they’d raised from eggs in their classrooms this fall. The activity was part of the Salmon Education Program funded by EWEB grants.Find Out More
EWEB is developing a plan to ensure that Eugene has a sufficient supply of reliable, affordable and clean electricity in the decades ahead, and is inviting the community to participate in the process.Find Out More
EWEB has joined 10 other Western utilities are to help ensure clean energy resources will be adequate to serve the growing demand in the region, while also managing costs and maintaining reliability for customers.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.Find Out More
For EWEB, preparing for harsh winter storms is a year-round responsibility. While we can’t control the weather, we can make our electric infrastructure more resilient to withstand storms that bring snow, ice and wind to Eugene.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
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
November 09, 2020
In the aftermath of the Holiday Farm Fire, EWEB is working with our Pure Water Partners and McKenzie Valley landowners to mitigate pollutants, including sediment, and prevent them from entering the river, impacting water quality and complicating drinking water treatment processes.
For the past six weeks, nearly 30 young adults from Northwest Youth Corps have worked in the fire-ravaged watershed while living in temporary campsites at EWEB's Lloyd Knox Park.
Northwest Youth Corps (NYC) is a non-profit organization that offers teenagers an education-based work experience modeled after the historic Civilian Conservation Corps of the 1930s. According to NYC Executive Director Jeff Parker, the purpose is to help youth and young adults learn, grow, and experience success.
"Our participants and leaders are grateful for the opportunity to participate in the Holiday Farm Fire recovery efforts with EWEB and the Pure Water Partners," says Jeff. "To be working in our own watershed adds even deeper importance to our conservation service work."
For young crews working in the McKenzie Valley, the primary task has been building and installing erosion control measures such as wattles and sediment fences. Wattles are rolls of fibers wrapped in netting that deflect and direct water flow while trapping sediment.
NYC crews making handmade wattles.
When installed along burned riparian areas, wattles help prevent increased sediment and fire-related compounds such as organic carbon, nutrients and metals from washing into the McKenzie River, currently Eugene's sole source of drinking water.
In just three days, NYC crews built 108 20-foot wattles.
Instead of relying on commercially available wattles which are typically filled with non-native plant materials and covered in plastic mesh, the young workers are making hand-made wattles out of jute webbing. The wattles are stuffed with willow branches harvested locally and with wood chips from trees burned in the fire.
Willow branches from Walterville Pond are used to fill the wattles and stake them in place.
"These young adults are environmentally conscious and education-driven; they want to learn," says EWEB environmental specialist Kris Stenshoel.
As part of their training, Kris tutors each crew about native plants, riparian zones and watershed ecosystems.
"We talk about EWEB's connection to the river through our hydro generation projects and our community's reliance on the McKenzie for clean drinking water, as well as threats to the watershed," he says. "The kids see themselves making a long-term impact on the health of the river and that gives them a personal connection to the work."
Since mid-October, Northwest Youth Corps has installed about 5,250 feet of wattles—that's nearly a mile!
"This recovery effort will be an important chapter in the story of the McKenzie watershed," says NYC Director Jeff Parker. "We are proud to help the healing and restoration of the land, water, and community."