the film
Commentaries and editorials

Salmon Habitat

by Molly Mettler
Idaho Statesman, October 1, 2021

Survey of science literature (by Schaller et al.) shows delayed mortailty of Idaho's salmon to be around 75%.  Combined with 50% 'direct mortality' within the hydrosystem corridor, means that only one of eight juvenile salmon from Idaho survives the hydrosystem unscathed. HEAR THAT:  One of eight survives unscathed. Fact: Our Idaho salmon are disappearing. Salmon were once very abundant in Idaho with runs numbering 2-6 million. Now, runs are significantly below replacement numbers. Unless changes are made to their habitat and ecosystem, many Idaho salmon populations will disappear in the next 5 to 10 years.

Fact: Habitat change means the four lower Snake River dams need to be removed. Those dams have outlived their usefulness; we get back less than 50 cents on every dollar invested. The electricity produced by the dams can be generated through better, and cleaner, methods.

Fact: There’s a way forward without the dams. We can still serve the needs of Idaho’s ranchers, farmers and businesses and help the salmon, too. Please check out Congressman Mike Simpson’s Columbia Basin Initiative for a common sense, integrated approach.

Bold action is needed, and now is the time.

Molly Mettler, Boise
Salmon Habitat
Idaho Statesman, October 1, 2021

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