Ecotrust launches new knowledge hub for Copper River region

Release Date: 03-19-2012

Carolyn Holland

Vice President, Engagement
503.467.0754

Copper River knowledge system to support wise planning for wild salmon and people

Cordova, AK — In an effort to help local citizens and resource managers better understand the watershed in which they live and work, Ecotrust has created an online information hub for the Copper River: the Copper River Knowledge System (CRKS). The website, www.crks.org, weaves together a wealth of resources about the Copper River region, from written narrative, audio recordings of traditional stories and local perspectives on environmental change, and links to scientific research and natural resource management reports.

“We all are deeply connected to the Copper River’s natural resources — chiefly its salmon runs,” says Ecotrust’s Copper River program director Erica McCall Valentine. “The hope is that this clearinghouse will foster a broader understanding of the natural and human processes affecting the Copper River watershed. And the network of people and groups that care about the watershed should be able to make better decisions for the future that ensure health and prosperity for the region.”

One of the highlights of the Copper River Knowledge System is its map feature, which brings to life publicly available datasets and allows users to download maps directly from the web. Topics covered by the mapping program and downloadable data sets include Copper River salmon fisheries, including their management and population distribution, mineral development, local and traditional knowledge, climate, human impacts on the watershed, water resources, and land management.

Ecotrust’s Copper River program is actively growing this body of knowledge, and all members of the public are asked to submit relevant information about the watershed to gmcmahan@ecotrust.org

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About Ecotrust
Ecotrust’s mission is to foster a natural model of development that creates more resilient communities, economies and ecosystems in the Northwest and around the world. Over more than 20 years, Ecotrust has converted $80 million in grants into more than $500 million in capital for local people, businesses, and organizations from Alaska to California. Ecotrust’s many innovations include co-founding the world’s first environmental bank, starting the world’s first ecosystem investment fund, creating a range of programs in fisheries, forestry, food, farms and indigenous affairs, and developing new scientific and information tools to improve social, economic and environmental decision-making. Ecotrust works locally in ways that promise hope abroad, and it takes inspiration from the wisdom of Native and First Nation leadership in its work. Learn more at www.ecotrust.org

About the Copper River Program
The Copper River Program seeks to maintain the long-term systemic resilience of the Copper River watershed, supporting wild salmon, diverse human communities, and a vibrant, well-branded wild salmon economy worth $45 million annually in the region. By supporting innovative management strategies for wild salmon and the habitat they depend on, we can continue to provide sustainable natural capital for Copper River communities and the State of Alaska.