Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
Upholding rural Americans' rights to grow food,
own property, and caretake our wildlife and natural resources.
Federal fisheries managers prescribe final 2007 salmon quotas, Eureka Reporter, posted 4/7/07. "...3-year-old salmon from the Klamath River are at a near-record high, which was a tenfold increase of what was expected." (KBC NOTE: According to tribes, gov't agencies, and enviros, the Klamath Irrigators and Klamath dams are killing the fish and pushing them to extinction. 2007 "a near-record high"??)
Chinook salmon season looks brighter, council says, posted 2/18/2007 The Oregonian. "About 60,000 wild fish are expected to return to the Klamath river to spawn, well above the 35,000 returning salmon that biologists set as a minimum level."
Salmon numbers better than expected; Fall Chinook return tops predictions by 8,000; coho also are up sharply, World Link, posted to KBC 2/15/07
Salmon rule gets preliminary OK, H&N 11/18/06 ‘‘This is certainly not acceptable to ocean commercial fishermen. It does not provide us with a means to access very many healthy hatchery stocks at all.’’
Farmers, fishermen meet, by Pat Ratliff, Pioneer Press 10/25/06
Coalition pushes for storage; Fishermen, farmers want to give Congress a unified message, H&N, posted 10/22/06posted to KBC 8/16/06 "The coastal salmon issue – characterized by most media accounts as a divisive “farmer vs. fishermen” issue – has been manipulated by certain environmental groups that place the blame for the fishery restrictions on irrigation and dams located on the Klamath River. The attached Issue Alert! tells another story." Dan Keppen Executive Director Family Farm Alliance
The following is a prime example of green media pitting farmers against fishermen, and green politicians using the fisheries closure to advocate farm downsize and dam removal: California-Oregon Fishery 'Failure' Declaration Triggers Financial Aid, LA Times, posted to KBC 8/16/06
**“Fishermen and Farmers Can Coexist, and We Will Coexist” by Dan Keppen, Executive Director Family Farm Alliance, Klamath Falls, Oregon 8/15/06 "The farmers and fishermen proposed similar solutions, including the need to address disease issues in the Klamath River, modernize and expand hatchery operations, control seal lion predation at the mouth of the Klamath, and improve real-time ocean management. Notably, both sides advocated for increased flexibility of Klamath Project operations, through regulatory measures and the development of new offstream storage like Long Lake, just west of Klamath Falls."
**Fisheries Disaster Declaration by Senator Doug Whitsett, Oregon District 28, 8/15/06 , posted 8/16/06
**Fisheries Disaster Declaration by Senator Doug Whitsett, Oregon District 28, 8/15/06
**Scott Boley, Oregonian Salmon Troller Responds to Oregonian Article "Feds declare fishery disaster" by Peter Sleeth, posted to KBC 8/15/06 "...I was puzzled by why you would quote Glenn Spain, who is only allied with California's Industry, and not talk to a real Oregon fisherman or a member of the only active organization that speaks for Oregon's Salmon Industry, The Oregon Salmon Commission. Mr. Spain to my knowledge represents not a single Oregon Troller, not one, and for you to quote him and not someone from Oregon's Industry is misleading to the public at best. Oregons Salmon Fishermen are active, organized, and working on solutions, and it is not under PCFFA's banner, or under the banner of Mr. Spains IFR group."
**Dick Carleton, Merrill Oregon, Responds to Oregonian Article "Feds declare fishery disaster," posted to KBC 8/13/06 "Perhaps if he (Steve Pedery of ONRC)and Mr. Spain and Mr. Grader would work with us to get good science and find real solutions instead of looking for a lawsuit to file we might make some progress."
FOLLOWED BY Oregonian article
**“Fishermen and Farmers Can Coexist, and We Will Coexist” by Dan Keppen, Executive Director Family Farm Alliance, Klamath Falls, Oregon 8/15/06 "The farmers and fishermen proposed similar solutions, including the need to address disease issues in the Klamath River, modernize and expand hatchery operations, control seal lion predation at the mouth of the Klamath, and improve real-time ocean management. Notably, both sides advocated for increased flexibility of Klamath Project operations, through regulatory measures and the development of new offstream storage like Long Lake, just west of Klamath Falls." "Zeke. you just don't get it...if you read Don's letter of the 18th, that is what we feel, we hope you folks will stay out of this long enough so we can get things done.. all the pcffa has done is file law suit after law suit, when we the Oregon troll fleet are in..."
A boatload of misery, With the season cut by 80 percent, the fishing industry is struggling to stay above water, The Register-Guard, June 11, 2006 (Oregon Troller view of the 2006 Season as it begins). More on government-inflicted fisheries disaster HERE
from environmental groups to Congress regarding disaster relief for
coastal fishermen, and money to "fix" Klamath's problems, which
according to this letter are caused by dams and Klamath irrigators.KBC
Klamath Water Users Response to Thompson Bill 4/21/06
(California) Governor to provide loan guarantees to salmon fishermen, Mercury News, posted to KBC 6/7/06
Wyden blocks major fisheries legislation, Wyden News Release 6/6/06
Farmers fishermen pursue alliance H&N 6/2/06.
Wanna have some fun? Let's kick a fisherman when he's down, Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier, posted to KBC 6/2/06.
Senator Whitsett’s May Newsletter, 5/30/06 "The Facts About the Upper Klamath Basin: The frenzied propaganda and the news reports blaming the Upper Klamath Basin ignore certain facts..."
**Coastal Fishery Crisis - Stop finger-pointing on the Klamath Basin, The Oregonian, 5/16/06, by Greg Addington, Executive Director of Klamath Water Users Association, and Dan Keppen, Executive Director Family Farm Alliance. "...one has to remember that there is only so much water that can be squeezed from an area that is just 2 percent of the watershed and uses only 3 percent to 4 percent of Klamath River flows in an average year."
Civic Proud, by
Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier, posted to KBC 5/11/06 "The
fishermen are in a horrible, desperate position. They were hoping
to get some immediate money as relief, but have since found out that
won't be happening. Many are nearly broke from last year's
They (the government) have no concept of urgent or immediate. If
they were trying to put the fishermen completely out of business
forever, they couldn't do a better job of it."
representatives meet, by Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier 5/11/06
Klamath, Coos representatives meet, by Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier 5/11/06
Commissioner Brown told the crowd, "We want to do any thing we can to help you over here."
Klamath, Coos representatives meet, by Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier 5/11/06"Coos County Commissioner John Griffith and Klamath County Commissioner Bill Brown arranged the meeting, which was also attended by Senators Joanne Verger, Coos Bay and Doug Whitsett, Klamath Falls as well as Representatives Wayne Krieger, Gold Beach, and Arnie Roblan, Coos Bay and Nikki Whitty, Coos County Commissioner. Around 80 people attended the four hour meeting."
Commissioner Brown told the crowd, "We want to do any thing we can to help you over here."
In fact, these fishermen blamed the fishery mismanagement by state and federal agencies that have resulted in a perfect federal regulatory storm. They compared their current plight to the unjustified 2001shut off of irrigation water to the 1400 farm families in the Klamath Project. They said that the alleged poor salmon runs are a government contrived regulatory crisis...These professional fishermen stated unanimously that environmental activist Glen Spain’s Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen Association neither represents them or their interests nor the interest of any other fishermen that they know."
Farmers, fishermen discover common ground on Klamath, Coos Bay World, posted“I've been lobbied by so many environmental groups to blame the farmers,” (fisherman) Ward said, “but we don't want to get into that divide-and-conquer thing.”
Hatchery salmon case heard in federal court, by William McCall 5/2/06
(Recent Letter from Don Stevens, advisor to the Oregon Salmon Commission, to Glen Spain and Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen, regarding Spain's untruths and mis-quotes the Register Guard article (following).
You don’t have to hate sea lions to realize some control must be exercised, Daily Astorian, posted to KBC 4/24/06 "There should always be room for them in the ocean and river, but it’s foolish to permit them to have an open-ended, no-limit season on salmon. This is particularly true of wild-run upriver Chinook, so endangered that the loss of a small number of fish can close fishing seasons to avoid impacting the survivors. The time is long past when humans could sit back and allow nature to take its course in finding a balance between sea lions and salmon. We have a responsibility to manage all species in ways that ensure their survival, while providing enough salmon so the local economy can survive as well. "
Common Sense on the Klamath Becoming More Common by Dan Keppen, Family Farm Alliance Executive Director 4/20/06
Klamath Water Users response to media accusations directed at the Klamath Project RE: Potential Salmon Season Closure, 3/20/06
Oregon Salmon - Media Pushes To Save Our Sacred Salmon, Shaft Our Farmers And Ranchers, by Dennis M. Becklin, publisher Oregon News Online 4/10/06Coastal Fisherman's wife to KBC regarding salmon season limit 4/9/06
Governor begins relief efforts, Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier 4/5/06"People are going to die" - John Cook, Bandon salmon troller
Salmon closure set to decimate, Pat Ratliff, Klamath Courier 4/5/06 "COOS BAY - Once again, federal agencies, through mismanagement, lack of action, driven agendas and selective reasoning have set the stage to decimate yet another Pacific Northwest group of resource users, their families, businesses and futures."
Fishermen rally; salmon ruling due on Thursday, The World Link, 4/5/06. "Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., said he empathizes with fishermen who could be affected by the closure and also urged the council to design seasons that will lessen the blow to sport and commercial fishermen....“I simply don't accept the assertions made that the federal government's management of water flows in the Klamath River is the primary reason for dwindling fall Chinook salmon numbers. It is inconceivable to me that family farmers and ranchers, who use less than 4 percent of Klamath River flows, are somehow responsible for the potential closure of this commercial salmon fishery .”
Fish Declines (and dam removal) - Defining the Real Problems, by Marcia Armstrong, Siskiyou County Supervisor District 5, 4/5/06.
Coastal Fishermen Fight Back With Petition, 3/30/06. (Coastal fishermen are facing a possible season closure. They have submitted the following petition stating that all fish returning to the Klamath are to be counted equal, regardless of spawning in the gravel, or spawning in a hatchery.)
Letter from the Coos County Board of Commissioners regarding the coastal fishery closure crisis, to: Sen. Ron Wyden, Sen. Gordon Smith, Rep. Peter DeFazio, Rep. Greg Walden, Secretary Gutierrez, Gov. Ted Kulongoski, April 5, 2005. "We therefore ask that the federal government, with your full support Governor Kulongoski, immediately take the declaratory and other actions necessary to have, from this point forward, full salmon fishing seasons in the Klamath River zone of the Pacific Ocean and the Indian fishery in the Klamath River."
Fishing Season Closure Misinformation, KFLS Radio, by Senator Doug Whitsett, Oregon District 28, posted to KBC 4/1/06 "Government agencies are poised to close 700 miles of the Pacific Coast to commercial salmon fishing and spurred on by the hysterical misinformation of certain so called environmental advocates many media outlets cannot wait to blame the Upper Klamath Basin irrigators. Both the frenzied propaganda and the news reports ignore certain facts:..."
Closing of Sport and Commercial Salmon Fishing, letter by Congressman Greg Walden to Dept of Commerce and Pacific Fishery Management Council, 3/31/06, pdf file.
KBC response to: Salmon fishermen feel pain of Klamath's troubles, followed by article, The Olympian posted to KBC 3/21/06. "Barnard from AP has been recently saturating his readers with his repetitive lies or half-truths along with Glen Spain, PCFFA-Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen (who represents some California fishing groups)"
There’s Something Fishy in the Media, by Dan Keppen, Family Farm Alliance Executive Director. "...West Coast readers were greeted to newspaper headlines that predict dire times for Pacific salmon fishermen. From Coos Bay to San Diego, newspapers have highlighted a potential decision by federal regulators to put 700 miles of the Pacific coast "off-limits" to Chinook salmon fishing," 3/16/06
Knowledge is Power, by Pat
Ratliff, Klamath Courier 3/16/06,
"if the Oregonian
prints 25 articles in a row without
ever contacting anyone from the
Klamath Basin to check facts or ask
questions about the other side of
the story, which camp would you put
them in, friend or foe?"
Stephanie Bailey, Klamath County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, responds to untruthful green media propaganda that harms the Klamath Basin 3/13/06: Seattle Post Intelligencer, Seattle Times, and the Oregonian
The Bucket, Herald and News
letters 3/20/06, 3 letters, by Julie
Smithson and Barb
Hall, Bill Ransom, and Marcus
On the Klamath River, pain flows downstream: another perspective. Steve Cheyne responds to Oregonian editorial, 3/12/06
series: Klamath Irrigators and Coastal
HERE is a letter...2005, from Spain to Oregon trollers and Oregon fishing industry leader blasting Klamath irrigators for fishery closures: "...the leadership of the Klamath Water User's Association (KWUA) do not care about fish -- they care about making sure they have all the irrigation water they want, and the fish be damned..." This was written as the coastal fishermen and Klamath Basin irrigators were meeting to find solutions.
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