Washington, D.C. (February 5, 2021) – Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) today released the following statement in response to the recent proposal to establish a Columbia Basin Fund and breach the Lower Snake River Dams:
“Proposals that include breaching the Lower Snake River Dams in the name of protecting salmon populations are flawed and fail to account for the sweeping impacts that would be felt across the region. With greater than 95 percent passage, these dams are not the greatest threat to fish survival. Our oceans are, coupled with predation and habitat loss. We need to focus on solutions that will get results, like cleaning up Puget Sound and restoring salmon runs there,” said McMorris Rodgers. “These dams are the beating heart of Eastern Washington and provide the entire Pacific Northwest with clean, renewable, reliable, and affordable energy. Spending more than $33 billion to breach them – with no guarantee that doing so will restore salmon populations – is a drastic, fiscally irresponsible leap to take. I look forward to continued conversations with my colleagues on the importance of the Lower Snake River Dams and solutions that will benefit all users of the Columbia River System.”
Also today, Cathy was joined by Representatives Dan Newhouse (WA-04), Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA-03) and Russ Fulcher (ID-01) in reaffirming their support for hydropower and emphasizing the importance of protecting existing hydropower resources in the Pacific Northwest. In a resolution, the Representatives expressed that it is the sense of Congress that hydropower is an essential source of Energy in the United States, which should not only be protected, but also increased substantially.
“The hydropower developed in the Pacific Northwest benefits every resident, family, and business in our region, and it’s an important component of the all-of-the-above energy strategy that will ensure the United States maintains energy independence and leadership on the global stage,” said the Representatives. “The clean, renewable power generated by the dams along the Columbia and Snake Rivers supplies half of the Pacific Northwest’s energy and is critical for a reliable power grid. Without it, life as we know it in our region would cease to exist.”
To view the resolution, click here: LINK