Forum Index > Public Lands Stewardship > Free the Snake Flotilla, October 3rd
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treeswarper
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PostSat Oct 03, 2015 6:15 am 
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Of course the people who live and work in related jobs can change and make their living in the tourist industry. 

Why do you people forget about the people who will be greatly affected by your "projects"? 

Maybe start in your backyard first?  Restore all the creeks ruined by development in the Puget Sound.   If your house is in the way, too bad.
Ruin your life first...time for my tired old saying of SET AN EXAMPLE before telling others to change.

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What's especially fun about sock puppets is that you can make each one unique and individual, so that they each have special characters. And they don't have to be human––animals and aliens are great possibilities
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Snowbrushy
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PostSat Oct 03, 2015 8:22 am 
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There actually are OK salmon runs up to Hell's Canyon, I believe. I can vouch for the run going up to Lewiston and above to the wild and scenic Salmon River. Those three tall dams around Hell's Canyon might block the salmon. But I'm no student of this subject. Here is a study: http://nezperce.org/Official/PDF/Draft_Plan_11'05'02.pdf
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NacMacFeegle
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PostSat Oct 03, 2015 9:24 am 
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treeswarper wrote:
Of course the people who live and work in related jobs can change and make their living in the tourist industry. 

You're mistakenly assuming that the dams are the the only way to transport stuff from central Idaho to the Columbia. Like Madcap said, we don't need the electricity, and the barge cargo can go by trail.

treeswarper wrote:
Why do you people forget about the people who will be greatly affected by your "projects"? 

You mean a few dozen dock workers and barge captains might have to find a new job? Let me play a heartfelt song on the worlds smallest violin.  nopity.gif

Jobs come and go, often only because of the fickle whim of a distant corporation. At least in the case of the snake river dams it would be for the sake of the recovery of an entire species, rather than for the sake of the profits of big business. Besides, the dock workers could find work loading trains, and the barge captains could go to work on the Columbia (where I would guess the barges themselves will likely be moved too), or indeed running rafts down the newly freed lengths of the Snake. With so much new water available for rafting, it's entirely possible that the boost to the tourism industry could be enough to create more jobs than might be displaced by a lack of barge traffic!

treeswarper wrote:
Maybe start in your backyard first?  Restore all the creeks ruined by development in the Puget Sound.  If your house is in the way, too bad.

Where do you get the impression that Puget Sounders don't advocate restoring waterways in their region? Last I checked there were numerous projects restoring streams and shorelines throughout Puget Sound. I'd like to see creeks and rivers restored to the extent you propose; going as far as removing structures from floodplains and riparian areas. I would add that we do also have a number of deadbeat dams on the West side of the Cascades, such as those built on the Lewis and Cowlitz rivers, that should be removed. By all means we should restore streams and tear down dams on the West side, but I see no reason why we can't do so on the East side at the same time!

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Randito
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PostSat Oct 03, 2015 9:47 am 
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MadCapLaughs wrote:
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:

Quote:
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.

In fact it is still just a hypotheses the degree to which dam removal will foster salmon recovery.    There are many many times when studies and analysis hypothesize an outcome and then when done in the actual world the results are different.   What is the term for that??  Oh Yeah: The Scientific Method!

I haven't seen any cost estimates yet, but based on the $351 million to free up the Elwha -- a billion dollars seems like a reasonable guess as to the cost of removing these four dams.  Observing the actual recovery on the Elwha will provide useful iinformation about how effective dam removal is and perhaps valuable information about steps needed make the recovery more effective.   

Condit dam on the White Salmon was removed four years ago

Salmon counts in the White Salmon are running around 8,000 -- I expec that number to increase over time.  The Snake is maybe 4-5 times the size of the White Salmon -- does it make sense to spent a billion dollars to increase annual salmon runs by 50,000 fish ?

What does that work out to per fish over 100 years ?  $200 per fish ? 

Perhaps the Snake dams can be removed more cost effectively that those on the Elwha -- Condit dam on the White Salmon was removed for about $18 million, a much better figure. 

What are the estimates for removing the Snake dams ? -- will those removals be gold plated make work projects as the Elwha project $351 million or something more sensible like the Condit dam removal $18 million?
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Snowbrushy
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PostSat Oct 03, 2015 4:56 pm 
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NacMacFeegle wrote:
Jobs come and go, often only because of the fickle whim of a distant corporation. At least in the case of the snake river dams it would be for the sake of the recovery of an entire species

Think jobs. Now, think about folks with careers. There's a difference. Yours truly (me) had an uncle who was head of the Port of Richland, on the Columbia River. I'm suggesting that there are local folks with careers and families who would be harmed in various ways if someone were to loose a career over a sudden huge change in a way of life, that they didn't instigate. Change by suddenly removing dams. And that harm would eventually come back to haunt the environmental mission of other causes. So, look at the big picture. Study. Take time.

Snake River Power Plant
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Snowbrushy
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PostSun Oct 04, 2015 11:28 am 
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News about the protest event to take down the dams.

LowerGraniteDam
LowerGraniteDam

http://www.boiseweekly.com/boise/flotilla-of-300-plus-protest-snake-river-dam-system/Content?oid=3614460
..
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Schenk
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PostThu Oct 15, 2015 2:52 pm 
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IanB wrote:
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).

rotf.gif
What a riot...you make that statement as if NO business or group of people on the West Side  has EVER benefited from taxpayer money.
Boeing
Safeco Field
The list expands and goes on as one does a little research...

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Jake Neiffer
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PostThu Oct 15, 2015 4:21 pm 
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The US is hardly alone when it comes to subsidizing food production.  Philosophically I’m generally against subsidizes but I wonder what the ramifications would be of repealing the entire farm bill.  Certainly there are major flaws with some of the programs, but its hard pin the blame farmers out there trying to make a living.
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Ski
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PostThu Oct 15, 2015 10:50 pm 
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of the 90.5 billion dollars in exports from Washington State in 2014, 11.6 billion was agricultural products.
gotta wonder how much of that was west-side products, eh?

think I'm with Randy on this one.
ROI on dam removal hasn't yet been established. yeah, there's some fish swimming up the Elwha - I was on the phone with ONP's fisheries biologist when he got the report of the first of them coming upstream - okay so groovy.
anybody done a cost analysis on refitting the existing dams with fish ladders?
or is that too hard?

and maybe this is a dumb question, but if you're going to start yanking out dams to restore runs of anadromous salmonids, doesn't it make better sense to work on those at the downstream end first? or am I missing something here?

the idealistic zeal is all fine and wonderful, but it don't pay the rent.

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IanB
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PostFri Oct 16, 2015 10:36 am 
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Sorry to disappoint assumptions, but I spent 20 years in small, local, profitable farming, on the west side.  (And I've never shopped at a Whole Foods.)  One of the galling things we dealt with was being taxed by a state-industry commission to support the advertising of our giant, corporate-owned, federally-subsidized competitors in eastern Washington.

It's no secret that the economic strength of the west side of the state provides a net flow of tax dollars to the east to support infrastructure.

Nor is it a secret that, when you do have a dam in place, that spilling water through the turbines actually generates salable energy as opposed to pumping it into irrigation systems that recover only 10 cents on the dollar.

(It's a perversion of the high-minded, Great Depression-inspired concept that big dams would create an oasis of 160-acre family-operated farms.  Some do exist, but the majority of the acreage has been consolidated into vast holdings in the hands of agribusiness giants.)

I recognize that in the U.S. the allocation of tax dollars and natural resources are political decisions that have become deeply influenced by business interests - and that this system is not going to be fixed anytime soon.  In regards to water, Reisner's Cadillac Desert makes painfully clear just how irrational, unsustainable, and utterly entrenched American water policy really is.  So when we can actually have a public debate about undoing one of the most egregious boondoggles, well that's rare.

It was argued above that dam removal, while a nice idea from an ecologically idealist viewpoint, is probably too expensive to pursue.  The fact is that maintaining the status quo is costing us hundreds of millions annually.  (And here, too.)  The Snake Dams choke a magnificent American river, are killing fish, and are operated at an enormous economic cost that benefits primarily corporate stockholders at the expense of taxpaying citizens.  It surprises me that folks who like the outdoors and care about recreation on public lands, and people that profess to believe in free-market economics, can rush to the defense of such a non-nonsensical system.

And don't even bring up publicly funded stadiums...

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mike
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PostFri Oct 16, 2015 10:50 am 
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ditto.gif
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NacMacFeegle
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PostFri Oct 16, 2015 11:32 am 
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Well put!  up.gif

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Snowbrushy
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PostFri Oct 16, 2015 11:35 am 
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Study it and listen to both sides. What does the government say?
http://www.tri-cityherald.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/article36709746.html
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Jake Neiffer
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PostFri Oct 16, 2015 11:47 am 
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Good post Ian.  I have expressed my distain for the industrial food complex and sang the praises for Salatin many times on this site.  From my vantage the best way to bring about change is to support conscientious farmers and maybe more grand and radical change will follow later.  Americans might have to start spending less money on I-phone upgrades and more on well sourced food to improve health and topple some of these corporate farms.

Quote:
as opposed to pumping it into irrigation systems that recover only 10 cents on the dollar.

I could be wrong but this figure seems a little off though.  Reference?
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Snowbrushy
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PostFri Oct 16, 2015 12:28 pm 
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IanB wrote:
pumping it into irrigation systems that recover only 10 cents on the dollar.

On the west side we don't usually deal with the Bureau of Reclamation or the Columbia Basin Project. I was not aware of lower Snake water and those dams having much to do with irrigation. It's mostly dry wheat farming out there, no?

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Forum Index > Public Lands Stewardship > Free the Snake Flotilla, October 3rd
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