Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
Upholding rural Americans' rights to grow food,
own property, and caretake our wildlife and natural resources.
11/3/06 Klamath County
Commissioner John Elliott responds to Pacific
Coast Federation of Fishermen's (PCFFA) comments
on Long Lake storage.
Elliott's response is followed by PCFFA's comments and attitude regarding Klamath Basin solutions as seen by fishermen and irrigators.
Fishermen and farmers have used resources and balanced wildlife and water use for centuries. They know how to fix things.
PCFFA's motto, as seen below, is, “I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it. " Perhaps rather than file lawsuits against the resource users, they should allow the resource users to teach them "how to do it", like, fish and farm and balance.
The preliminary findings are that Long Lake will be an excellent reservoir. The bottom has a good covering of clay and is, in fact, holding water now. Some areas of the sidewalls will have to be sealed, but there is apparently enough material on site to meet this need. As far as the cost is concerned, the estimated cost was based on previous design criteria, which included a dam on Round Lake and connecting tunnels to Long Lake. Long Lake has not been subjected to a detailed cost analysis as a stand alone reservoir. However, it should be much less than the previous estimate.
John Elliott, Klamath County Commissioner
HERE for more on Upper Basin water storage.
Following is PCFFA's remarks regarding fishermen and farmers meeting and finding solutions:
A WEEKLY QUOTA OF FISHERY SHORTS CAUGHT
AND LANDED BY THE INSTITUTE FOR FISHERIES
RESOURCES AND THE PACIFIC COAST FEDERATION OF
“I am always
doing that which I cannot do, in order that I
may learn how to do it. ..........Pablo Picasso
Settlement Approved by
12:14/03. FISHERMEN AND FARMERS IN TALKS ON THE KLAMATH: BUT IS IT ENOUGH? After years of frustration concerning the lack of action by federal and state agencies, fishermen and farmers are falling back on their individualistic personalities to initiate conversations on restoring the Klamath River. Beginning last spring, fishermen along the Oregon and California coasts and farmers in the Klamath basin have gathered to discuss the needs and options along the Klamath.
The fishermen and farmers in these meetings have drafted a list of suggestions of how to approach effective and efficient restoration efforts for the Klamath. Such items include: review of the efficiencies of hatcheries, promotion of the use of pilot-program DNA testing of salmon origin for real-time management; removal of the dams along the river; implementation of the established restoration plan drafted by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences that was published a few years earlier; involvement of natural resource users in the decision-making process; addressing sea lion predation; and inclusion of fishermen in the Farm Bill.
Additionally, both groups are concerned that fish and farms often overlap in their water needs, and therefore both groups are supporting the creation of the Long Lake reservoir. Long Lake would be an additional reservoir created near Upper Klamath Lake designed to collect extra winter runoff water from the Klamath and would be able to hold up to 500,000 acre-feet of water. However, concerns about the Long Lake proposal have yet to be addressed, including earlier engineering studies that indicate water would simply leak out the bottom, and an estimated price tag of more than $500 million.
The list of options presented by the fishermen and farmers is extensive, which demonstrates that the two industries have fashioned a new phase of cooperation. Unfortunately, these suggestions do not provide new or insightful solutions to the problem. Beyond needing federal and state governments to join in the movement to effectively make restoration progress in the Klamath River, more fishermen and farmers need to step up to the plate and act. The problems in the Klamath are numerous and will not be solved until all stakeholders are present and can act upon the various solutions already offered.
For more information regarding the options presented by fishermen and farmers see Susan Chambers’ article of 23 October 2006 in the Coos Bay World at: http://www.theworldlink.com/articles/2006/10/24/news/news01102306.txt
Page Updated: Thursday May 07, 2009 09:14 AM Pacific
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