BPA to Pay NW Tribes Millions
by Associated Press
The Bonneville Power Administration will pay three northwest Indian tribes $900 million to drop a lawsuit over salmon protection.
The money will pay for fish hatchery improvement and stream restoration in the Columbia River system. But other plaintiffs say you can't save the threatened salmon without removing four dams on the lower Snake River.
"We obviously are interested in effective restoration of these fish and, so far, the vast preponderance of scientific opinion has said that you can't do that without taking out those dams," said Sara Patton, with the Northwest Energy Coalition.
The tribes and the federal agency have been at odds for years in court over the conflict between salmon runs and power demands on the river.
It's not clear if a federal judge will approve the deal when he reviews a new river management plan this May.
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