Mitchell Act Final Environmental Impact Statement

NOAA Fisheries has released a final environmental impact statement (EIS) to inform its decisions regarding what kind of hatchery programs to fund with federal appropriations provided under the Mitchell Act. The scope of this EIS includes all of the Columbia River Basin open to salmon and steelhead. Under the Mitchell Act, funding is provided to produce salmon and steelhead for fishing and conservation.

The hatchery production of salmon and steelhead in the Columbia River provides benefits to the tribal and non-tribal commercial and recreational fishers in the basin itself and also contributes to ocean fisheries from Northern California to Southeast Alaska. The Mitchell Act, which was passed in 1938, supports roughly 45 percent of all of the hatchery production in the Columbia River.  The final EIS evaluates the resource effects of implementing alternative hatchery management strategies, throughout the Columbia River Basin.  NMFS will prepare a record of decision (ROD)  through careful consideration of a range of comments received during public review of the final EIS. NMFS is also considering the anticipated effects of its preferred policy direction on species listed under the Endangered Species Act. It is anticipated that the ROD will be published in 2016.

For more information, please contact James Dixon at (360) 534-9329, or


Executive SummaryPDF Formatted Document800kb

Mitchell Act Final Environmental Impact Statement (including appendices) PDF Formatted Document43.0MB

Appendix L -- Responses to Public Comments (as separate document) PDF Formatted Document21.9MB

Frequently Asked Questions PDF Formatted Document34kb

Update on Status of Preparation of the Record of Decision [81 FR 2196, January 15, 2016] PDF Formatted Document 170kb