Squires: It Is Not Clear If Dams Are Responsible For Salmon Runs

Nearly 50 potentially impacted organizations recently penned a letter to Idaho Representative Mike Simpson opposing his proposal to breach the four Snake River dams. Washington Grain Commission CEO Glen Squires said there are better ways to handle issues with salmon recovery, particularly since roughly 90-95% of the fish safely make it through the dam.

“The main message was that there’s a need for science-based solution recovery. NOAA Fisheries is the agency charged with that, so let’s fund the science-based recovery plans.”

Squires said if you breach the four dams, you are not only damaging several industries, but it could also damage the environment by putting more trucks on the road and coming up with worse energy alternatives. He said the community could see increased prices for electricity, or goods if it costs more to move them around the Northwest.  Squires added it’s unclear if the four dams are to blame for the salmon runs.

“There’s something effecting all the other salmon runs as well. There’s probably some other common denominators. People reference fish in the Puget Sound that don’t swim past any dams. The Fraser River in Canada, there’s no dams. Those runs are also suffering.” 

Squires also noted that Idaho can lower their allowable river temperature limit since colder water is better for salmon survival. 

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