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Hold Up Your End of the Deal!

by Steve Bradburn
The Local Planet, November 23, 2000

President Clinton's recently announced plans to save the Columbia-Snake River salmon is a farce. It ignores much of the known science and allows up to 8 years before important decisions will be made — some of these stocks of salmon could very well be gone or irreparably damaged in less than 8 years.

Stop trucking and barging the young fish to the ocean — this hasn't worked and has cost millions of taxpayer dollars. The fish require fast moving, fresh water as smolts on their journey to the sea — this just isn't happening in the reservoirs behind the four dams on the lower Snake River — the solution may very well be to remove the dams— President Clinton's plan takes this option off of the table for at least 8 years — this is too long. Also, the slack water behind the dams becomes too warm in violation of the Clean Water Act and is lethal to the young fish.

The US government entered into treaties with several Indian tribes in the 1800's guaranteeing them salmon in perpetuity. To continue to allow these fish to dwindle and go extinct is a clear violation of these treaties. We need to honor these agreements and put the fish ahead of some of the other concerns on the table.

Let's get real — restore the river habitat so the fish can be fish — let the wheat and other crops be trucked down the highways. I don't want to have to explain to my grandchildren why we allowed the salmon to go extinct — do you?

Steve Bradburn, Kettle Range Conservation Group
Hold Up Your End of the Deal!
The Local Planet, November 23, 2000

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