November 14, 2014
(Nevada City, CA) – Legislation to restore the Klamath River and its salmon runs moved forward today, with the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee approving S. 2379 on a bipartisan vote. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and Barbara Boxer (D-CA) introduced the legislation in May.
“The Senate’s action today is a step forward for all of the farming, fishing, and tribal communities that depend on the Klamath River,” said Steve Rothert, California Director for American Rivers. “The movement of this legislation, combined with the funding for the Klamath in the water bond that voters approved last week, provides good momentum for this critical restoration effort.”
The bill authorizes the Klamath Restoration Agreements, resolving long-standing water rights disputes, increasing water supply reliability for upper basin agricultural communities, improving river flows and water quality, restoring wetlands, and revitalizing struggling Klamath River salmon runs.
The agreements, the first of which was finalized in 2010, are the product of years of negotiations among more than 40 stakeholder groups including American Rivers, with the goal of restoring the river, reviving ailing salmon and steelhead runs, and revitalizing fishing, tribal, and farming communities. If enacted, the legislation will open access to more than 300 miles of habitat for salmon and steelhead.
About American Rivers
American Rivers protects wild rivers, restores damaged rivers, and conserves clean water for people and nature. Since 1973, American Rivers has protected and restored more than 150,000 miles of rivers through advocacy efforts, on-the-ground projects, and an annual America’s Most Endangered Rivers® campaign. Headquartered in Washington, DC, American Rivers has offices across the country and more than 250,000 members, supporters, and volunteers.