skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

ND makes the grade in a national report evaluating public school support; SCOTUS justices express free speech concerns about GOP-backed social media laws; NH "kids on campus" program boosts retention; proposed law bans hemp sales to Hoosiers younger than 21.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

The Supreme Court hears arguments on whether social media can restrict content. Biden advisors point to anti-democracy speeches at CPAC, and the President heads to the US-Mexico border appealing to voters on immigration and border issues.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

David meets Goliath in Idaho pesticide conflict, to win over Gen Z voters, candidates are encouraged to support renewable energy and rural America needs help from Congress to continue affordable internet programs.

Summer of Drought, Wildfires Could Devastate NW Salmon Species

play audio
Play

Wednesday, June 9, 2021   

PORTLAND, Ore. - There are signs this summer could be a bad one for the native salmon of the Northwest.

Already, drought has gripped the region, causing low river flows that could be hard for fish to navigate or spawn in. That's bad news for species already teetering on extinction, especially in the Columbia River Basin.

Betsy Emery, advocacy and campaign manager for the Association of Northwest Steelheaders, said a study this year from the Nez Perce Tribe predicted 77% of Snake River Chinook salmon will be nearly extinct in four years if current trends hold.

"Our salmon runs cannot afford one catastrophic event that can really devastate the potential for salmon recovery," she said, "and so far, we're seeing a lot of red flags that indicate we could see a catastrophic event like that this summer."

More than 70% of Oregon is experiencing drought considered "severe" or worse, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said March and April were among the driest since the 1890s, with many streams at 25% of their typical flow for this time of year.

Emery said wildfire is another concern, which can cause poor water stream quality. While wildfires have the potential to improve quality in the long run, Emery said the endangered fish might not have that much time. She noted that humans can't improve habitat for salmon overnight - and have little control over drought or changing ocean patterns because of climate change.

"The only thing that we have immediate action and control over is the function and existence of the lower Snake River dams," she said. "There's significant science that connects those dams to hot water and devastating mortality for the salmon that are swimming through."

She said the dams are especially harmful for the juvenile salmon that pass through them.

U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, proposed a plan for the region that included breaching the Snake River dams, but elected leaders in Oregon and Washington have sidelined it. However, Emery said they've kept dam breaching on the table. She added that what's important right now is that leaders identify a clear pathway to salmon recovery.

"The clock is ticking. We do not have time for some sort of lengthy process," she said. "We need an aggressive timeline that provides funding for the bold actions that we need to take."


get more stories like this via email
more stories
A new report shows that people who complete Prop 47-funded programs like those offered at Safe Harbor Recovery Center in Los Angeles are much less likely to be reincarcerated. (Safe Harbor)

Social Issues

play sound

Programs intended to reduce the chances that someone will end up back behind bars are working, according to a new analysis of California state data…


Social Issues

play sound

Arizona is gearing up for its presidential preference election that takes place in less than a month, and registered Democrats and Republicans were …

play sound

You might say "every day is 'bring your child to college day'" at New Hampshire's Manchester Community College. On-campus childcare programs are …


Social Issues

play sound

The number of Black mothers in Ohio who die during or following pregnancy continues to climb and health advocates said they hope to shine a light on t…

Legislative supporters say had South Dakota taken part in a new federally funded summer meal program for low-income families, an estimated 54,000 children around the state would have benefited. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

It's been an uphill battle for childhood nutrition advocates to advance meal access policies in the South Dakota Legislature. However, organizers say …

Environment

play sound

A cooperative effort has seeded more than 26,000 acres in eastern Nevada. It's all in an effort to increase desirable grasses, forbs and shrubs while …

Social Issues

play sound

Texas postal customers, especially in rural areas, are experiencing delays in mail delivery, and some letter carriers feel it could get worse…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021