McMorris Rodgers: Biden’s Dam Breaching Recommendation Doesn’t Add Up
Washington, D.C. – Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) today released the following statement in response to the Biden administration’s National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration report on Columbia Basin salmon recovery efforts.
“While I appreciate the fact that the Biden administration included more voices in its final report on Columbia Basin salmon, I question the integrity of their dam breaching recommendation. The report explicitly states that it is unclear how breaching the Lower Snake River dams would positively impact juvenile fish survival rates. It further states that the concept of delayed mortality, an issue dam-breaching advocates often point to as the reason for ripping out critical federal clean power and navigation infrastructure, is unproven. Still, their unequivocal conclusion is that the dams must be breached to save the salmon. Just like two plus two doesn’t equal five, this just doesn’t add up.
“The only thing made clear by this report is that politically driven narratives and emotions continue to drown out the facts. Salmon runs have consistently improved over the last three years. Spring and Summer Chinook returns doubled from 2021 to 2022 and are 36-percent higher than the 10-year average. Fall Chinook have also increased 37-percent in just one year, proving that our mitigation efforts are working and ocean conditions have an outsized impact on returns. These simple facts might be inconvenient to the dam-breaching crowd, but this issue is far-too important for them to be ignored by federal scientists putting forth recommendations for salmon recovery.”
Click here to read the report.