Columbia River Gorge management plan updated to protect salmon, address climate change, support cideries

The Oregonian

It took nature millions of years to form the Columbia River Gorge. It took the Columbia River Gorge Commission four years to come to an agreement on its “Gorge 2020” Management Plan.

That’s pretty good from a geological perspective, but at times the process must have felt glacial to the 13 commission members who researched, listened, debated, argued and haggled before finally agreeing to the plan.

That agreement came Tuesday in a 9-2 vote to approve the plan. One Commission member doesn’t vote, another was absent from the Tuesday meeting.

“We have spent four years grappling with the tough questions about how to conserve the Gorge’s natural, cultural and economic assets in the face of accelerating social, environmental and economic changes,” said Robert Liberty, chair of the Gorge Commission, following the vote. “Based on all we have heard and learned, we have updated our Management Plan, which is essential to fulfilling the mission Congress assigned to us.”

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