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Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
Upholding rural Americans' rights to grow food,
own property, and caretake our wildlife and natural resources.


Klamath Basin Alliance, 8/20/08

"The response to our petition has been quite encouraging. In fact, many of the respondents enclosed additional comments with their petitions. Here are just a few samples:"

On one of the petitions, the sender refused to sign his name for the following reasons, and I quote:

"I am against this agreement. It’s extortion, blackmail and illegal all the way. Secret indeed! Tribes do not have more water rights than farmers! The Klamath Basin River Compact, authorized by Congress, has been totally ignored. How can this happen in America? I cannot sign or identify myself because of threats of harm to me and mine."

A tribal member had this (in part) to write:

"…I grow up here in Klamath County and I like to say the Klamath Tribe don’t do anything for us. We have to beg for what we can get… Anyways the way I see it, the tribe has no rights of this land or the water…"

Other comments from petitioners:

"...The only solution to the problem is off stream storage."

"…makes no sense at all, especially at this time in history."

"Shelve this scam, if can’t be shelved – place on Nov ballot that will take care of this. American people do not need this. No blackmail."

We received the following letter, whose author will go unnamed to protect his/her privacy.

“Enclosed is my signed opposition for the Restoration Agreement for all of the reasons stated, and I would like to add one.

As a part time commercial fisherman from approximately 1976 to 1982, I would suggest to you that at least part of the reason for the loss of salmon for the Lower Klamath River Tribes was their own greed and lack of conservation on their part. My understanding was their fishing rights were for subsistence, and not for the sale of salmon. I personally saw gill net fish for sale at the buyers for the canneries in Brookings, there were no other gill net fisheries at that time, only Klamath River fish. They also were caught in Reno with a truck load of salmon for sale. Almost every year at that, the commercial fishery was cut by several weeks each year to protect the Klamath River fish.

To be completely honest, the foreign trawlers were also responsible for the demise of the fishery industry. The cannery ships were humungous and the support boats weren’t little. Many times at Whales Head Beach I saw trawlers just offshore from the beach, not 3 or 6 miles out. They took every fish in their nets, at that time, the Coast Guard would not respond to that kind of call out. Of course, their boats don’t compare in size to foreign boats.

I do not believe salmon can survive in Klamath Lake, but that’s another issue. Whether they can survive to go upstream I don’t know.”

Klamath Basin resident Nell Kuonen provided the following letter she wrote to Pacific Corp on January 28, 2008. We were given her kind permission to share the letter in hopes it may be of value regarding the KBRA.

"Just plain logic and common sense would dictate leaving the Klamath River dams in place. When Cecil Andrus was Secretary of the Interior, he flew over the Klamath River and the Klamath Irrigation Project. He was very impressed and said it was a great "working" river.

"In 1983 President Reagan appointed me the Federal Representative and Chairman of the Klamath River Basin Compact Commission. I continued to serve under the first President Bush. As you probably know, the Compact and been agreed to by both the Oregon and California legislatures and ratified by Congress in April 1957 and it worked! Too bad it was allowed to vanish! The value of the hydroelectric energy produced at the dams on the Klamath River is beyond measure. In addition to the valuable energy, there has been flood protection that is most important. Now, more than ever, both the energy and flood protection is needed. Civilizations have vanished by having no water or by bad water management.

"I sincerely hop a reasonable solution can be reached without removing any dams.

"Do the proponents of the removal of the dams ever consider the salmon that never get started up the river because they have eaten by seals at the mouth? I live near the Klamath River and it doesn’t look like it’s dying or even sick!"

Note: the Klamath River Basin Compact can be read in it’s entirely at our links from Grange-PFUSA.

To participate, click the PETITION button to the left, fill out and return by September 1st, 2008.

See our recent newspaper ad - click HERE.

The Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement, Draft 11, was released Tuesday, January 15, 2008. We STRONGLY urge you to read the COMPLETE Agreement. Do NOT be misled by the wording of the Summary document!!!



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