Salmon Fishing Season Starts March 1
Thursday, February 24, 2011
HOOD RIVER, Ore. - The sport-fishing season for salmon starts March 1 on the Columbia River, and once again this year, only hatchery fish can be kept - wild chinook salmon and wild steelhead trout have to be released. Advocates for native salmon are waiting for a federal court decision about whether the government's latest plan to save the endangered fish is sufficient.
One man watching the case is Steve Hawley of Hood River, who has written a new book about the salmon controversy. Hawley says it took multiple Freedom of Information Act requests to get the documents he needed, and they reveal a gloomy picture of the government's role in saving salmon.
"What the record shows, and the story that my book tells, is there are entrenched sets of political and economic interests that have really worked hard to badly bend, if not outright break, the laws that are mandating that we not let these species go extinct."
The native salmon protection plan is supposed to be based on what is termed the "best available science," says Hawley, but his research uncovered attempts by government agencies to discredit or suppress studies that don't conform to the current federal plan.
Hawley says he found that the most salmon are harvested not by fishermen, but by the dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers. He tells fellow fishermen that they are fighting over the smallest percentage of the catch, but says it's still important to speak up.
"Fishermen, in particular, if they could spend one-tenth of the time that they spend on the river being active, making one or two phone calls to let their representatives and the agencies know what they would like to see happen, it might make a tremendous difference."
Federal agencies have said the dams generate low-cost power for the Northwest and that measures are being taken to help fish get around them safely.
Hawley's book, "Recovering a Lost River," published by Beacon Press, outlines the political battle behind the scenes. It comes out March 15.
get more stories like this via email
The Iowa League of Women Voters plans to ask the Iowa Legislature to rethink the voting restrictions put in place prior to last month's midterm electi…
Agriculture groups and government agencies aren't slowing down in trying to convince farmers to use more sustainable practices such as cover crops…
Winter is here, leaving many older South Dakotans vulnerable to social isolation. But a growing body of research, as well as opportunities, shows …
By Jala Forest / Broadcast version by Nadia Ramlagan Reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration Nearly 40% of college students a…
The Biden administration has proposed a rule to limit methane flaring from oil and gas development on public lands. The rule would impose royalty …
The flu, COVID and RSV are rapidly spreading in Kentucky, and health experts say that's a problem for hospitals, schools and the state's vulnerable …
As its 125th anniversary nears, the Connecticut Audubon Society has released a report detailing the effectiveness of conservation efforts in the …
2022 was a banner year for women elected as governor. Nearly one-third of America's governors will be women next year, which is a record. Iowa …