Eklutna Dam Removal
Time to move forward
In the early stages of Anchorage, our power companies dammed and devastated the Eklutna River to provide power to the growing community.
For centuries before the dams, the Dena’ina people harvested food from the river rich with salmon. Stories have told that the Eklutna River may have been one of the area’s most abundant salmon streams, bearing all five species.
In 1929, the 70ft. Lower Eklutna Dam was built in a 300ft. deep narrow-walled canyon with an 1800ft. long tunnel to a powerhouse that provided power to Anchorage until 1955.
Then to meet growing power needs, a second dam – the Eklutna Power Project – came online upriver. The Eklutna Power Project left the Lower Eklutna Dam useless.
The Conservation Fund in partnership with the Eklutna Native Corporation and the Native Village of Eklutna raised 7.5 million dollars to remove the deadbeat dam. The dam was torn down in 2018, but to restore the Eklutna River we will need water to be diverted from the use of the power companies back into the river. The power Project operators have to initiate mitigation for their impacts to fish and other wildlife no later than 2022
It’s time to restore the Eklutna River.