Crapo Offers Support for Salmon Recovery
Idaho Mountain Express, June 1, 2009
Speech presents new interest in plight of struggling species
During a speech before the Northwest Energy Coalition in Boise Friday afternoon, U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, offered to support, lead or help convene a collaborative process designed to ensure salmon recovery and address other regional energy and water needs.
"I support the recovery of the Pacific Northwest's wild anadromous fish to sustainable and fishable levels," he told a crowd of approximately 100 at the Red Lion Hotel.
Crapo called the salmon and steelhead recovery issue "probably the most complex issue we could try ... but we must try it."
"Does that mean dam breaching must be on the table?" he asked. "Yes. But that also means not dam breaching must be on the table."
Idaho Rivers United Executive Director Bill Sedivy said he welcomes the senator's leadership.
"We welcome the senator's offer to lead the effort to bring people together to resolve the issue of protecting and restoring Idaho's precious salmon," Sedivy said. "We also appreciate his willingness to leave all salmon solutions on the table, including the option of removing the lower Snake River dams."
Crapo's announcement came only days after the Obama administration sent a high-level team to the Northwest to examine the issue. It also came roughly two weeks after Federal Judge James Redden issued a strongly-worded letter asking the federal government to do more, including putting lower Snake River dam removal back on the table, in order to recover endangered salmon and steelhead.
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