Frank and Jeanne Moore Wild Steelhead Special Management Area Designation Act (S. 513/H.R. 1308)
The North Umpqua River in southwestern Oregon — renowned for its emerald green waters, thunderous water flow, and vibrant wildlife — offers Americans the opportunity to appreciate the great outdoors, take in the sights and sounds of the great Northwest, and fish for salmon, steelhead, trout, and other native species found throughout the 104 mile long river.
For Frank Moore, a World War II veteran and ardent conservationist, the river has served as a place of peace and tranquility. Upon his return to the United States following his service overseas during World War II, Mr. Moore suffered greatly from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) — a mental condition commonly found in U.S. military service men and women who have experienced the hardships of war overseas. Unfortunately, given the time of his return, and lack of medical research or study in the field of mental health in the 1940’s, his disorder went undiagnosed. It was through his love for the outdoors and appreciation for the natural wonders of Oregon that he was able to qualm the hardships of his mental condition and find the strength necessary for a life of passionate service and activism in support of environmentalism.
Throughout his life, Mr. Moore and his wife, Jeanne, have advocated for the preservation of Steamboat Creek — a small tributary to the North Umpqua River. It is there where they have been able to witness the grandeur of America’s northwest and experience the abundance of God’s blessings through the vibrancy of its wildlife. The tributary is infamous for its fly fishing and tranquil surroundings.
Today, the landscapes and waterways may look healthy and well taken care of, but this was not always the case. In the late 50’s and 60’s, logging and overfishing caused severe environmental degradation to Steamboat Creek — causing unnecessary hardships and consequential impacts to its waterways, landscapes, and native wildlife in the decades following the harmful human activities. To address these impacts and limit such activities from occurring once again in the near or distant future, Frank and Jeanne Moore have partnered with environmental groups and community/political leaders to protect the iconic Steamboat Creek, and advance legislative solutions to implement environmentally conscious management practices for the North Umpqua River and its vital components. These efforts —if successfully advanced and implemented —will bolster the environmental renewal of the tributary and solidify the conservationist legacy of the Moore family.
Today, in the 115th Congress, a bill, the Frank and Jeanne Moore Wild Steelhead Special Management Area Designation Act (S. 513/H.R. 1308), aimed at protecting Steamboat Creek has favorably passed the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, and is ready for further action to be undertaken, if and when Congressional leaders are ready to act on common sense solutions for the environmental health of America’s most precious natural resources.
The American Conservation Coalition commends U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Representative Peter DeFazio for their leadership on environmental stewardship in America’s northwest, and for spearheading the legislation in Congress to establish a permanent sanctuary for Oregon’s ecological sensitive lands, waterways and species.
For more information on the conservation efforts in Oregon’s North Umpqua River, visit: https://www.pacificrivers.org/frank-and-jeanne-moore-wild-steelhead-sanctuary.html
David Saul Acosta is a graduate student at Harvard University, currently pursuing a masters degree in International Relations.