Forum Index > Public Lands Stewardship > Free the Snake Flotilla, October 3rd
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JVesquire
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 12:47 pm 
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Little late, but for you Pullmanites with a boat tomorrow:

http://www.freethesnake.com/

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Wild salmon, steelhead, and pacific lamprey are dying by the thousands due to the dams on the lower Snake River: Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose, and Lower Granite. These four unnecessary dams are costing taxpayers millions of dollars to maintain and repair. Meanwhile, energy produced by these dams is being replaced by clean energy alternatives. The dams’ primary purpose, barge transportation, has declined nearly 70 percent.  It’s time to remove these outdated low-value dams.



Join us on October 3, 2015, to tell our elected leaders it's time to remove  the lower four Snake River dams, begin the largest wild salmon recovery effort in the world, and revitalize economies, communities, and cultures throughout the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rockies. It's time to free the Snake!

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Randito
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 1:08 pm 
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Lets see how well salmon actually recover in the Elwha before getting too gung ho about the effectiveness of dam removal as a salmon recovery tool.   There are many other challenges to salmon recovery.
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Snowbrushy
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 2:25 pm 
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It's an OK idea but there are the port districts of Clarkston and Lewiston. That presents big economic problems for the Inland Empire if the dams are removed. Maybe better fish ladders?  http://portofclarkston.com/index.php?page=port-history

A port marina/camping: http://www.portofcolumbia.org/lyons-ferry-marina-mainmenu-40
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IanB
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 2:42 pm 
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Thanks for the link.  I signed their petition.

Hard to think of any more obvious challenges to salmon recovery than walls of concrete impounding rivers.

Hard to feel too put out for the "Inland Empire" (aka giant agribusiness) that's been profiting for decades on water and transportation subsidized by the federal government (aka taxpaying US citizens).

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treeswarper
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 4:25 pm 
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Where do I look to verify that the power put out by those dams is replaced by so called "green" power?  What is that power?  Those ugly wind machines?  Acres of ground covered by solar panels?  (both most likely also heavily subsidized by taxpayers)

I vote for better designed fish ladders.

Oh, and that agribusiness is where something called FOOD comes from.  All those nice little packages of stuff in Whole Foods does not magically pop up in the store.

Lastly, what do the Idahoians want?  They are the people who will be affected.  Why should Seattle people be involved at all?

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NacMacFeegle
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 5:54 pm 
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I'd love to join the flotilla, too bad it's such a long drive and I have no boat! The Snake River dams need to come down, the sooner the better! Salmon recovery is infinitely more important than Idaho's ability to sell grain to China at taxpayer expense.

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Randito
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 6:30 pm 
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The snake river dams provide an average of 1200 MW electrical generation (peak power is 3300 MW) without emitting any CO2.

It's an open question how much dam removal would actually help salmon recovery, especially considering how many other dams there are downstream.

I'm an old river rat and love free flowing rivers, but the proposals to remove these dams has never made much sense to me.
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NacMacFeegle
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 6:43 pm 
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RandyHiker wrote:
The snake river dams provide an average of 1200 MW electrical generation (peak power is 3300 MW) without emitting any CO2.

A large nuclear power plant (or preferably half a dozen small ones) can produce over 3500 MW of clean, constant power, and can be built where the power is needed, rather than hundreds of miles away (thus saving vast amounts of power that would otherwise be lost in transit).

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Randito
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 6:58 pm 
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NacMacFeegle wrote:
A large nuclear power plant (or preferably half a dozen small ones) can produce over 3500 MW of clean, constant power, and can be built where the power is needed, rather than hundreds of miles away (thus saving vast amounts of power that would otherwise be lost in transit).

The last nuclear plant licenced in the USA was in 1996 --  while I agree that the USA should pursue nuclear power as an alternate to coal and oil fired plants -- it seems like a long pull before another nuclear plant gets built in the PNW -- at the current time I would expect massive political protests from feverent anti-nuclear activists.
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monorail
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 7:05 pm 
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Here's a link that addresses some of the concerns people have raised about taking out the dams:

http://www.wildsalmon.org/facts-and-information/myths-and-facts-about-lower-snake-river-dam-removal.html

I say bring 'em down!
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Randito
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 7:31 pm 
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monorail wrote:
Here's a link that addresses some of the concerns people have raised about taking out the dams:

http://www.wildsalmon.org/facts-and-information/myths-and-facts-about-lower-snake-river-dam-removal.html

I say bring 'em down!


Best excerpt

Quote:
The science is clear that lower Snake River dam removal is the best hope to restore salmon runs in the Basin

The Elwha dam removal project cost $351.4 million

Before spending hundreds of millions (perhaps a billion) in public funds to remove these four dams it would wise to see to what extent salmon actually recover on the Elwha -- it will probably take a decade to really see how much salmon come back.
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NacMacFeegle
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 8:13 pm 
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The salmon are already returning to the Elwha, the prospects for their recovery in that river are looking very hopeful indeed. Besides, there are other reasons to remove dams other than fish passage, such as improved water quality, decreased sedimentation, decreased water temperature, and less loss of water due to evaporation.

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Randito
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 8:59 pm 
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NacMacFeegle wrote:
The salmon are already returning to the Elwha

That actually remains to be seen -- there has been a lot of talk about this happening and excitement about seeing salmon swiming pass the former dam site.

However since the life cycle of salmon is typically 4 years it is too soon to know how sucessfully the salmon observed swimming past the former dam site have breeded and layed eggs, those eggs hatched and the fry reaching the ocean.

Salmon nests "redds" require the right mix of gravel, shade and other factors to effectively raise eggs to fry.   With decades of sediment on the lake bottom it may take many years -- even decades before the areas above the former dam site are productive salmon habitat.

Quote:
vWhen salmon first migrated upriver after the first dam was removed, the dippers keyed in on them right away and were observed gobbling up fish eggs as they spawned, he said.
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MadCapLaughs
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 10:12 pm 
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RandyHiker wrote:
It's an open question how much dam removal would actually help salmon recovery

You left out some important information from that link monorail posted:

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report from 1998 concluded that removing the lower Snake River dams had an 80 and 100% probability, respectively, of recovering Snake River spring/summer chinook and fall chinook. In addition, NOAA’s 2000 Biological Opinion concluded that dam removal was the most biologically certain way to recover Snake River salmon: “[B]reaching the four lower Snake River dams would provide more certainty of long-term survival and recovery than would other measures.” According to the American Fisheries Society, “[i] n contrast to the uncertainty of success from the removal of hydro projects in other portions of the basin, the benefits to Snake River stock survival and recovery would be assured with the removal of the lower four dams on that system...”

So it seems those who have actually studied the issue, as opposed to idly speculating on it, have come to pretty clear conclusions about the viability of salmon recovery with the removal of the dams.

The electricity is not needed, and the barge cargo can go by rail. Tear 'em down.
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JVesquire
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PostFri Oct 02, 2015 11:38 pm 
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Habitat restoration is an ideal method of recovery. Since barge traffic is becoming obsolete, I see no reason not to do this. I will miss swimming at the beach at Hood Park, however...
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Forum Index > Public Lands Stewardship > Free the Snake Flotilla, October 3rd
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