Dam Removal Best for Regionby Mary Jokela
Spokesman Review, May 27, 2007
I am one of many Eastern Washington residents who do not want to see our wild salmon extinct, believing that removing four dams may very well be the most effective and affordable option. And I disagree with Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers' opposition to congressional legislation to further study removal of the four lower Snake River dams. By providing the necessary studies and planning for informed decisions, the Salmon Economic Analysis and Planning Act (SEAPA) makes sense for salmon as well as for wheat growers, shippers and industries who currently benefit from the dams.
We could replace these outdated dams with more versatile railroads and highways to benefit not only farmers but also rural communities and small businesses throughout Eastern Washington. Thirty thousand acres of reclaimed riverside land would provide habitat for recreation, fish, birds and wildlife. And the land and local economies would benefit from abundant salmon and steelhead returning to their home rivers.
SEAPA provides us not only valuable information but also the opportunity to examine what we want our region to look like 20 or even 100 years down the road. The four lower Snake River dams are symbols of a passing era.
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