The page provides many documents and links to source material regarding water quality and river restoration issues in the watershed. Please send to us additional documents or links that you think should be published or archived here to assist various students, informal working groups, planners, or researchers.
The photos are from the May 2016 “World Fish Migration Day” celebration on the Royal, organized and supported by a dozen local organizations to connect people and communities to fisheries and the Royal River.
LINKS AND DOCUMENTS:
Royal River Fish Passage Studies Summary (January 2018): The consulting firm GZA GeoEnvironmental Inc., worked to summarize in twelve pages in plain English many of the studies that are posted in their entirety on this page, below. This two-page fact sheet is GZA’s summary of GZA’s summary.
Fishway Assessment and Cost Analysis Report (January 2018): This report by the consulting firm Inter-Fluve is a technical report on alternatives (do nothing, dam removal, fish passage) at Bridge Street and East Elm Street. Importantly, readers of this report should supplement it with the October 2017 USFWS analysis of Middle Falls & Factory Channel posted below.
TNC and DEP sediment analysis at Bridge Street (November 20, 2017): TNC and DEP conclude that the Bridge Street impoundment is relatively clean. See related Press Herald 2016 story, posted below. And here is the November 24, 2017, Portland Press Herald follow-up story. And here is the full source report from Stantec, commissioned by The Nature Conservancy March 16, 2016.
Trout Unlimited Sebago Chapter correspondence to FERC and Yarmouth Town Council (November 9, 2017): Trout Unlimited’s correspondence may understate the role of local jurisdiction, and may inaccurately characterize the existence of hyrdopower negotiations. And here is Town Manager Nat Tupper’s November 14 analytical response to Trout Unlimited.
USFWS Analysis Regarding Fish Passage at Middle Falls (October 2017): With a few days work, Factory Channel could be made an effective fish bypass of Middle Falls.
Lewiston Sun Journal Article on Brandy Brook fish passage (September 2017): Royal River Alliance partners helped improve fish passage in New Gloucester, on Brandy Brook, to improve wild trout habitat.
Royal River Alliance correspondence with USFWS, FERC filing (March 2017): Royal River Alliance leaders asked USFWS to analyze effective fish passage at the Bridge Street (Sparhawk) dam.
Fish Ladders on U.S. Dams Are Not Effective (April 2013): Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies
Royal River Alliance correspondence with the Town of Yarmouth, FERC filing (Febuary 2017): Royal River Alliance leaders filed commentary on the current status of FERC terms and conditions for the Bridge Street (Sparhawk) dam.
Town of Yarmouth correspondence to RRCT, and RRCT response (February 2017): The Town Manager informed RRCT of ongoing interest by a hydropower developer, at Bridge Street (Sparhawk).
Friends of Casco Bay water quality monitoring (2017): Friends of Casco Bay’s (FOCB’s) website includes recent water quality information in Yarmouth harbor, Cousins River, Cousins Island, and more. This FOCB 2017 summary page describes some of the specific data from Friends of Casco Bay testing on the Royal River estuary and Cousins River estuary, sites with water quality results of concern.
Watershed map — climate change focus areas (2017): This map illustrates areas of the Royal River watershed — especially in Durham and Pownal, that The Nature Conservancy identifies as highly “resilient” for ecology in climate change scenarios.
Watershed map — conserved lands (2016): This map illustrates all conserved lands in the watershed, key trails, and more.
Watershed map — why so muddy (2016): This map illustrates the extent of “Presumpscot Clay” soils, which give the Royal River its characteristic chocolate brown siltation, a naturally occurring event irrespective of pollution or development. The upper reaches of the watershed include spring-fed lakes and vast clean aquifers supporting Poland Spring, fish hatcheries, and clear bubbling trout streams.
Watershed map — fish passage (2016): This map illustrates sea-run fishery restoration potential upriver in Pownal, New Gloucester, Freeport, and other towns, were Yarmouth’s dams to provide or maintain or restore effective fish passage.
Focus Area of Statewide Ecological Significance (2016): The Royal River estuary, the Cousins River estuary, and broad sections of Casco Bay and its shoreline are part of a focus area of statewide ecological significance identified by Maine DIFW and others.
Maine Rivers Royal River Restoration Project (2016): Maine Rivers’ website includes many recent reports and press articles on sediment sampling, hydrofluvial geomorphology, dam alternatives, fisheries, and more.
Casco Bay Estuary Partnership (2016): CBEP has recently published Casco Bay Plan 2016-2021 with specific findings and recommendations following its 2015 State of the Bay report, focusing on a range of watershed, land protection, coastal, and land use issues.
Memorandum from Yarmouth Town Manager to Town Council (Feb 2016): This memorandum covers topics including hydropower, fish passage, and state and federal jurisdiction.