Solving the Klamath River fisheries issues
requires true and wise leadership.
Washington Post 7/7/07 by Steve Kandra, Merrill farmer
Once again, we see that it has become
more important to assign blame for political gain than to solve
the problem and bring communities together.
The first act of the Bush administration was to shut irrigation
water off from family farms to address fish issues. The later
actions of the administration were to address a lack of
substantive biological information regarding the needs of the
fishery resource, while pursuing significant environmental
restoration. That work continues as a priority to this day.
Productive conversations are taking place among the people of the
region. Tribes, farmers (of which I am one), ranchers, local
governments, fishermen, and state and federal representatives are
pounding out collaborative agreements. Unfortunately, surrounding
that conversation are those for whom ideology and rhetoric are
more important than addressing and solving problems.
It's time to move on. The farmers, tribes and fishermen are
solving problems, not pointing fingers. Political maneuvering will
only perpetuate the problem -- and it is a disservice to all the
Klamath peoples whose interests should be the real goal of policy.
The writer is a member of the board of directors of the Klamath
Water Users Association.
Fish and Farmers Both Need Water
Washington Post 7/7/07
The June 27 front-page story linking Vice President Cheney to the
2002 killing of 70,000 fish from Northern California's Trinity and
Klamath rivers is no surprise to the Hoopa Valley Tribe. Because
these two rivers run through our reservation, we were the first to
walk the shore and see thousands of dead salmon that were starved
for water so farmers who wanted to grow surplus crops would vote
for congressional candidates friendly to the White House.
Today the fish in the Trinity and Klamath rivers are still
fighting for their lives as the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation starves
the Trinity River for restoration funding and aged dams block
natural propagation on the Klamath River. Congress now has an
opportunity to turn back the tide of political corruption that has
almost destroyed these rivers by reaffirming decades of
restoration science and water needs supported by tribes, fishermen
and local governments in Northern California.
CLIFFORD LYLE MARSHALL,