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Remember the Klamath River fish kill of 2002
Dan Bacher
Glen Martin has written a superb article, "The Big Kill, Part Two," on the Huffington Post about how west side San Joaquin Valley corporate agribusiness interests use their political clout to grab water from the Trinity River that is badly needed to keep salmon alive on the Klamath River. "In letters to David Murillo, the Mid-Pacific Regional Director of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and copied to a federal advisory committee, the Trinity Adaptive Management Group , CVP contractors expressly stated their opposition to augmented flows from Trinity Reservoir to save Klamath fish," said Martin. "Couched in the convoluted legalese of these missives is a blunt message -- give us the water, and the hell with the fish. Nothing new there: the agribiz barons of the western San Joaquin have always copped a thug's attitude when it comes to California's water, demanding and expecting it all," Martin stated. Glen closes by suggesting that we let our voices be heard. I urge everybody to read his piece at: To refresh people's memories, below is my article about the Klamath River adult salmon, published in September 2002. The fish kill helped spur the current movement to remove four Klamath River dams owned by Warren Buffett's PaciCorp. The Yurok, Karuk and Klamath Tribes, fishing and environmental groups and the Upper Klamath Water Users Association support the Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA) and the related water sharing agreement, the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement (KBRA), as solutions to restoring the watershed. The Hoopa Valley Tribe, Quartz Valley Indian Reservation and Resighini Rancheria and other environmental groups including Oregon Wild support dam removal, but oppose the agreements, saying they violate tribal rights while not restoring the river. For contrasting views on the KBRA and tribal rights, see the op-ed in the Eureka Times-Standard by Dania Colegrove, Yurok/Hoopa tribal member, on May 30:, and the op-ed in the same publication on June 18 by Molli White, Karuk tribal member, and Frankie Joe Myer, Yurok tribal member: As tribes, fishermen, environmentalists and farmers debate the merits of KHSA and KBRA, the Brown administration is fast-tracking the Bay Delta Conservation Plan to build the peripheral tunnels to export massive quantities of Sacramento River and Trinity River water to corporate agribusiness and oil companies. If built, the tunnels would lead to the extinction of Central Valley Chinook salmon, steelhead, green sturgeon, Delta smelt, longfin smelt and other species, as well as threaten salmon and steelhead restoration on the Trinity River, the Klamath's largest tributary. The Trinity, whose water is diverted to the Sacramento River via a tunnel to Whiskeytown Reservoir, is the only out of basin water supply for the federal Central Valley Project. Photo of Klamath River fish kill courtesy of the Yurok Tribe.

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