Regional solution is essential to support Northwest economy, save salmon, honor treaties

American Rivers statement on release of final Murray-Inslee report  

August 25, 2022 

Contact: Amy Souers Kober, 503-708-1145 

Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Washington Governor Jay Inslee released their final report today examining how to replace the hydropower, irrigation, and transportation services of the four federal dams on the lower Snake River. Senator Murray and Governor Inslee’s final report and recommendations make it clear that dam removal is necessary to restore a healthy, free-flowing river and recover endangered salmon runs, which are essential to Northwest Tribal Nations and the region’s economy. 

Kyle Smith, Snake River Director for American Rivers, made the following statement: 

“This report is a call to our entire region to roll up our sleeves, have the tough conversations, and get to work on specific solutions with a timetable that works for everyone. Communities are hurting and we need answers and action now.” 

“Investing in the Northwest’s infrastructure and replacing the lower Snake dams’ services is essential before the dams are removed. Our region must take the lead on a plan now, or else somebody else will dictate our future. We need clean affordable energy, reliable transportation to get goods to market, and thriving agriculture. We also need abundant, harvestable salmon and steelhead runs. Today’s report is an important step toward gathering necessary information and crafting a collaborative, pragmatic solution.” 

“We are grateful to Senator Murray and Governor Inslee for their leadership in defining the path forward. Their work, along with the efforts of other members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, is creating important momentum towards a lasting solution for the Snake River and all of the people who depend on it. The Biden administration’s recent commitments on salmon recovery and honoring treaties is encouraging, and increases the urgency for a collaborative, regionally-led solution. American Rivers is dedicated to working with anyone committed to the health and future of the river, its salmon, people and economy.” 

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