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 Gravel Mining Continues to Threaten Chetco River, Rogue Estuary
In-stream gravel mining on the Chetco River In-stream gravel mining on the Chetco River
The Rogue River and its estuary, along with the public, were the losers in two regrettable recent land use decisions concerning gravel mining.
Oregon Shores, along with Kalmiopsis Audubon Society and the Curry Sportfishing Association, had taken two cases to the Land Use Board of Appeals in our quest to stop instream gravel mining in the Rogue River estuary. This ecologically important area, already severely degraded, is now under even greater threat.
The three groups appealed Curry County’s decision agreeing with Tidewater Contractors that the existing mining site at Wedderburn on the north bank of the Rogue River was zoned as “Estuary Conservation,” which allows mining as a conditional use. LUBA upheld the County decision. This means that Tidewater can apply for permits to the county, and other required agencies, such as the Department of State Lands and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, to continue and possibly expand mining at the Wedderburn site.
Tidewater also applied to Curry County for permission to mine the 52-acre mill site gravel bar on the south side of the Rogue River. The county granted the permit, and LUBA upheld the County decision. This site has never been commercially mined for gravel. It is also on the Department of Environmental Quality’s Contaminated Sites Index because of toxins remaining from the old lumber mill. The mill site is also just downstream from the City of Gold Beach’s water intake. Tidewater must now pursue permits with state and federal agencies before mining at the mill site can take place. Other required permits will consider impacts to salmon on the federal threatened species list, as well as sedimentation problems in the estuary.
The Rogue estuary is in serious trouble, being heavily clogged by a sediment plume that is due in large part to mining by Tidewater at the Wedderburn site. The condition of the estuary is critical to the future of salmon on the Rogue. Oregon Shores and its partners in this fight will continue the battle to protect the lower Rogue, opposing the permits for instream gravel mining as Tidewater applies for them.

Articles on topic 'Curry: Gravel Mining':
  Oregon Shores Seeks Again to Protect Rogue from Mining
  Efforts to Block Tidewater’s Gravel Mining Succeed
  Curry Planning Commission Turns Down Gravel Mining
  Efforts to Protect the Lower Rogue From Gravel Mining Continue
  Gravel Mining Continues to Threaten Chetco River, Rogue Estuary
  LUBA: Tidewater May Apply for Wedderburn In-stream Mining
  South Coast Rivers: Gravel Mining Continues
  Results of Hearing on Gravel Mining on Elk
  Curry County Hearing July 21 on Gravel Mining in Elk River
  Two More Victories on Gravel Mining on the Rogue
  Third Hearing Scheduled on Gravel Mining near Old Mill Site
  Tidewater Requests "Interpretation" of Estuary Boundaries
  ACOE Solicits Comments on Tidewater Application on Elk River
  Two Victories on Gravel Mining on the Rogue
  New Guide to Permitting for Instream Gravel Mining
  New Guide to Permitting for Instream Gravel Mining
  Gravel Mining on the Rogue
  Chetco River Gravel Mining
  Rogue River Gravel Mining
Contact: Phillip Johnson, CoastWatch Director, (503) 238-4450, or EMAIL