A New Path Forward for the Snake River!
Send Thanks to Governor Inslee
The Pacific Northwest is one of the most wonderful places in the world. We want to keep it that way. American Rivers is committed to protecting and strengthening what makes our region special, including abundant wild salmon and steelhead supporting communities and livelihoods and honoring treaty rights; clean, affordable energy powering our homes and businesses; and thriving agriculture driving a strong Inland Northwest economy.
If we want all of this for our future, we must come together around shared values: the desire for continued prosperity and growth, love of place, respect for our neighbors up and downstream, and the big, inspired thinking that has always defined our region. When it comes to Snake River salmon recovery, communities have been stuck in a cycle of conflict and uncertainty for decades.
In response, Washington Governor Jay Inslee launched a Lower Snake River Dams Stakeholder Process last year. Governor Inslee’s report and resulting process is a step toward the creative thinking and problem solving we need to do as a region to understand and map a path forward.
The process has engaged local, state, tribal and federal leaders and stakeholders in addressing issues associated with the possible removal of the four dams on the lower Snake River in eastern Washington in order to recover endangered salmon populations that serve as a vital food source for Southern Resident orcas. Salmon are integral to the region’s indigenous people and support the recreation and commercial fishing industries.
While Governor Inslee’s report does not take a stance on removing or keeping the four lower Snake dams, it emphasizes opportunities to increase understanding, has brought often polarized communities together and has helped spur a conversation that can move us forward together. The stakeholder process has created space for a dialogue that engages both sides of a complex issue and identifies opportunities for collaborative steps forward.
You can help by thanking Governor Inslee for his leadership in bringing different sides together to resolve conflicts and help us plan for a brighter future. We’re not finished yet, and we need his continued support and leadership to keep this regional conversation going — and to ultimately work with Washington’s Congressional delegation to develop a comprehensive solution that recovers salmon and steelhead through lower Snake River dam removal as part of a broader platform of strategic investments to modernize our energy grid, meet our obligations to sovereign tribal nations, improve aging infrastructure, and support a growing agricultural economy