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Commentaries and editorials

What Dams Cost Us

by Steve Evans
Lewiston Tribune, March 9, 2005

Having just read Dick Sherwin's letter (March 28) attacking Robert Parrett Jr.'s letter (March 20) supporting the return of the salmon, I might be led to believe that the return of salmon could be incompatible with "logging, mining, ranching and farming."

I might be led that direction but I'm not. Mr. Sherwin ought to look at June Critchfield's fine little book, "Of Yesterday and the River," and he would find that the fruit farmers and ranchers of the lower Snake had their way of life destroyed by the construction of the four lower Snake dams. As for logging and mining, they were both around a long time before anyone got the bright idea of dropping concrete plugs into one of God's great canyons.

A fourth-grader could throw a rock across the fish ladders built; they are no substitute for a free-flowing river the size of the Snake. Mr. Sherwin does seem to be disgusted with Robert Parrett Jr., and we have that much in common. I am disgusted too. It is because Mr. Parrett did not come straight out and advocate removing the earthen portions of the four lower Snake dams. The $9 billion saved should be more than enough to assist everyone now supported by slackwater, with money left over. We could save tax dollars and logging, mining, ranching and farming.

Steve Evans, Lapwai
What Dams Cost Us
Lewiston Tribune, March 9, 2005

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