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Commentaries and editorials

Snake River: Dam
Removal is Counterproductive

by Robert Bisordi
Seattle Times, September 16, 2022

Progressives seem to believe the world runs on rainbows and unicorn poop.

Lower Granite Dam in SE Washington state impounds the Lower Snake forty miles up beyond the Idaho border. Re: "Inslee, Murray say Snake River dam removal possible, but not yet" [Aug. 25, Local News]:

Like many of us, I am concerned about our energy future. That is why I believe proposals calling for the removal of hydroelectric dams on the Columbia and Snake Rivers are counterproductive.

Given the need for clean, dependable energy, it would eliminate this reliable source at a time we need it most. Plus, removal of those dams comes at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars and would cost hundreds of millions more to replace the energy produced by them.

Unfortunately, the return of those particular wild salmon runs may be wishful thinking. Spawning habitat is only one factor in their survival. Salmon are under several environmental pressures, including downstream pollution, ocean mortality and climate change.

There are better solutions, like investing in additional clean-energy sources, which will serve the greater good and benefit all salmon runs, not just those in the Columbia. Additionally, we could boost our financial support of tribal and state salmon hatcheries, which have a better chance of success and are better adapters to a changing environment. If we are strategic, we can perhaps have all the salmon we want, but we may have to compromise on having them everywhere we want them.

Robert Bisordi, Des Moines
Snake River: Dam Removal is Counterproductive
Seattle Times, September 16, 2022

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