For the past sixteen years, the DRC has been working collaboratively to restore streamflows and improve water quality in the Deschutes River and its tributaries. Our work is a vital piece of rebuilding and sustaining a healthy ecosystem in this region.
It's easy to understand how healthy rivers benefit people, agriculture and fish, but the link between well managed natural resources and healthy thriving communities is not always readily apparent. Not surprisingly, tourism is one of the largest drivers of Central Oregon's economy. Approximately three million people visit the Bend area annually.
According to a recent study by Visit Bend, of the many activities attracting people to Central Oregon, the top reasons given were 1) outdoor recreation, and 2) leisure and sightseeing. Activities such as hiking, trail running, biking, camping, rafting, kayaking, canoeing, birdwatching and fishing all rank very high on visitors' "to- do" lists while in our region.
As we pull together to rebuild the economy of Central Oregon, restoring streamflow to the Deschutes River and its tributaries is critically important. Our natural resources are what attract visitors, entrepreneurs, businesses, and new residents to the region. Ensuring that the Deschutes Basin remains a beautiful place to live and visit is critical for our long term well being our our communities.