Welcome to SalmonAID, a non-profit dedicated to restoring our rivers, wild salmon species, and the communities that depend on them for survival.
Restore the lifeblood of San Francisco Bay
End the man-made drought in the Bay-Delta
The rivers of the San Joaquin basin flow from the Sierra Nevada mountains, through the Central Valley, and into the Bay-Delta estuary, feeding eventually into San Francisco Bay and the ocean. The San Joaquin basin once was home to thriving populations of salmon, steelhead, and other native species found no place else in the world.
Today, the rivers of the San Joaquin and much of the life they support are dying for lack of sufficient water.
What’s happening to the rivers of the San Joaquin Valley?
In a typical winter-spring, California's agribusiness and cities take two-thirds of the San Joaquin valley’s water. These diversions are devastating to California’s salmon fishery and, with it, communities that depend on this river for food, jobs, clean water, and recreation. The salmon and steelhead that are so vital to California's tourism and fishing economies will disappear completely from the Central Valley if we don’t allow more water flow down the San Joaquin River and its tributaries. It’s not fair that some businesses and cities exploit the San Joaquin’s fresh water so heavily while the rest of us pay the price in lost fisheries and polluted water.
There is a better way
Leaving more water in the rivers can:
- bring 100,000 salmon back each year,
- support fishing and outdoor recreation jobs and communities across California,
- improve water quality for farmers and cities that depend on the Delta as a water source, and
- create a healthy future for the Bay-Delta estuary—the most important resource of its sort on the Pacific coast.
Speak up for the rivers
The State Water Resources Control Board, the primary agency responsible for protecting California's water resources, will soon decide the fate of the San Francisco Bay and the rivers of the San Joaquin Valley that feed it. In 2010, the Water Board itself concluded that at least 60% of the San Joaquin basin’s natural winter-spring flow needed to make it it to the Bay-Delta in order to reverse the disastrous conditions that prevail there now.
- Far too little water in the rivers,
- declining fisheries,
- poor water quality, and
- continued degradation of the Bay-Delta estuary.
And a bad decision on San Joaquin flows to the Bay-Delta estuary sets a terrible precedent for the Board’s next big decision – how much water should flow from the rivers of the Sacramento Valley to the Delta and out to the Bay.
If we don’t convince the Board to act to restore river flows, the future of the Bay-Delta, the rivers that feed it, and the once-great salmon runs that depend on it, is bleak.