Shared Monitoring Plan
FFTF Partners understand that the key to successful collaborative floodplain management is ensuring that individual stakeholder goals are being integrated at both the project and watershed scales. Partners need to be able to observe progress toward goals. With this in mind, FFTF Partners have embarked on an ambitious long-term monitoring plan.
The intent of this Shared Monitoring Plan is to help FFTF Partners track progress as well as gauge their continued support for the overall program. This is a watershed-scale monitoring plan; project-specific monitoring will occur as each project is implemented.
Definition of Floodplain Health
Floodplain health is a key concept for FFTF partner activities and investments. Healthy floodplains can maintain or protect valuable services such as flood protection, improved water quality, fish and wildlife habitat, and recreation. FFTF partners have developed a definition for floodplain health that supports their long-term vision for the Puyallup Watershed.
FFTF partners believe:
Healthy Puyallup floodplains will support sustainable salmon populations through their natural physical and biological processes, the long-term viability of agricultural lands, and communities with reduced risk to regular and catastrophic flooding
Floodplain health is defined as:
The condition of multiple elements that when considered together contribute to a functioning floodplain, including the natural physical processes and biological factors that support salmon populations; the long-term viability of agricultural lands; and the reduction of the risk of flooding.
FFTF Partners have identified a set of watershed-wide goals relevant to improving and maintaining floodplain health:
- Make communities more resilient to flooding and reduce flood risk and damage to private property
- Reduce flood risk and damage to public infrastructure
- Integrate agricultural interests into proposed large levee setback projects
- Protect/conserve agricultural lands
- Prevent conversion of agricultural lands to non-ag uses
- Maintain viable farming economy/critical mass of farmland and farm businesses
- Improve drainage on existing farms
- Reconnect floodplain to the river (at various flow levels)
- Re-establish intertidal habitat in estuary
- Improve spawning habitat quality and increase salmon abundance
- Provide more space for the river to migrate
- Improve water quality
- Increase public access to floodplains
Index of Floodplain Health
FFTF Partners have selected a set of high-level metrics for tracking progress toward shared goals and also floodplain improvement or degradation from the multi-benefit perspective. The metrics have been assembled into an Index of Floodplain Health.
The Index of Floodplain Health brings together concerns for farms, fish, and flood risk to answer the key question asked by FFTF Partners:
How Are We Improving Floodplain Health?
Individual and integrated metrics are focused around three categories:
Using metrics to track these themes will help understand whether or not capital and programmatic investments made within the Puyallup Watershed are contributing substantially to achieving the goals identified by the FFTF Partners. This understanding will inform and direct future efforts of the FFTF Partners.