PNS Daily Newscast - July 3, 2020 

Economists say coronavirus disaster declarations may be the quickest path to reopening; militia groups use virus, Independence Day to recruit followers.

2020Talks - July 3, 2020 

Trump visits South Dakota's Black Hills, Mt. Rushmore today; nearby tribal leaders object, citing concerns over COVID-19 and a fireworks display. Plus, voter registration numbers are down from this time in 2016.

ID Climate Change Debate Turns “Fishy”

March 27, 2008

Boise, ID – More rain in the winters, less snow, warmer water - all are affecting salmon runs in the Pacific Northwest. New research shows that changing weather patterns and temperature levels can no longer be ignored in federal efforts for the recovery of endangered runs of the region's iconic fish.

A study released today analyzes the latest science on climate change and how it's affecting the health of river systems and endangered salmon. Salmon scientist Jim Martin, who formerly served as Oregon's fisheries chief, says the good news is that Idaho is home to the kinds of high-quality mountain streams and rivers the fish need to survive - but the fish have to be able to get to those waterways.

"The headwaters of the Columbia and many of the Pacific Northwest streams, these are the finest salmon habitat left in the world, but we need to be able to provide a migration path that allows those fish to get there."

Martin says federal salmon plans so far have not adequately addressed climate change. He says protecting headwaters habitat, managing migration paths, and reducing climate change pollution all have to be in the recovery package.

"By cumulating all of those strategies together, we can really use our existing headwater habitat as our anchors of recovery."

The report lists solutions that could be incorporated immediately into the next federal salmon plan, such as changing hydropower plant river flows to help push fish to the ocean.

The next federal plan will be unveiled May 3, after courts ruled that previous plans were "illegal." Critics of salmon recovery schemes say fish management takes away water from hydropower generation and irrigation systems.

Deborah Smith/Kevin Clay, Public News Service - ID