santa.salmon
Landscape designers visualize the opportunities of a free-flowing river.

2. VIDEO: One of a Kind Snake River Salmon
Videographer Skip Armstrong does it again.

3. SALMON: Scientists forecast decline in Columbia Basin for 2011
Bad news for salmon and the people whose jobs rely on them.
Creating carbon-free energy, good jobs and healthy communities – and further diminishing the need for 4 dams on the lower Snake.
1. Revisioning the lower Snake River
Landscape designers visualize the opportunities of a free-flowing river.
 
gradstudent.designer.smGraduate students with Washington State University (WSU) and University of Idaho unveiled their “Future Directions for the Snake River, Dams and Regional Transportation,” visions of a lower Snake River landscape without dams at the Sage Bakery in Lewiston, ID last week.  

Professor Jolie Kaytes’ Landscape Design class spent the semester meeting with stakeholders, touring and lower Snake River and consulting with experts to develop designs on how the lower Snake River could look in the future with agriculture, modern transportation and local communities thriving along a restored river.  

The students this fall were the second group to imagine a future Snake River.  Last year’s class explored ideas for the Snake River waterfront in Clarkston/Lewiston.  Designs focused on reconnecting the historic downtown with the river, utilizing reclaimed riverfront lands for public markets, recreation, tourism and commerce.  

This year's designs were unveiled at an evening reception at Sage Bakery.  The students’ work will remain on the walls through the end of January 2011, in conjunction with a gallery of historic photos of the lower Snake River, showing what the river looked like before dams and could look like again.
More information from Washington State University.
 
 
2. VIDEO: One of a Kind Snake River Salmon
Skip Armstrong does it again.
 
 
 
Check out this great new video from filmmaker Skip Armstrong capsulizing the story of Snake River salmon.



Over the last few years, videographer Skip Armstrong has been working with SOS and the great folks at Idaho Rivers United to provide a closer look at the salmon, rivers, and habitat of the magnificent Snake River Basin in central Idaho and northeast Oregon.

"It was absolutely amazing to be at Dagger Falls and Selway falls to witness these fish returning to their homewaters," says Armstrong.  "It's a difficult feeling to describe but I would often feel so inspired at the end of the day.  How could one not after witnessing such a sight? These fish achieve a seemingly impossible feat when they arrive at and then pass these big rapids.  I used my kayak and snorkeling equipment to get to unusual vantage points to film and was happy to stay out for the entire day to shoot."

Stay tuned for more from the One-of-a-Kind project in early 2011.
 
3. SALMON: Scientists forecast decline in Columbia Basin for 2011
Bad news for salmon and the people whose jobs rely on them.
 
chinook.smRegional fisheries managers just released their predictions for 2011 Columbia/Snake River salmon returns and – despite the regular assurances from the federal government that they have salmon recovery well in hand – the situation does not look so rosy. This is bad news for salmon and for the people whose jobs rely on them. Before getting into 2011, however, let’s review what happened in 2010.

Last year, federal agencies in charge of Columbia Basin salmon recovery rather loudly anticipated “record returns”. They like to say that because, of course, it sounds good. The phrase strikes salmon advocates, however, as more than a little cynical. Historic returns to the Columbia Basin ranged between 16 and 30 million fish each year, so calling a return that is less than a million a “record” seems rather misleading. In determining a “record run”, the government conveniently only started counting after the dams on the Columbia and lower Snake were completed and much of the damage was already done. It was our famous American Mark Twain who complained “there are three types of lies: “lies, damned lies and statistics.” Case in point.
 
 
 
 
4. Wind Win: Salmon-friendly energy expands in the lower Snake Basin.
Creating carbon-free energy, good jobs and healthy communities – and further diminishing the need for 4 dams on the lower Snake.
turbineTowerTruckPuget Sound Energy (PSE), a Northwest-based power utility is in the midst of expanding its wind turbine facilities in the wind-rich lower Snake River drainage in southeast Washington State, just a stone’s throw (OK, a long throw) from the salmon-killing lower Snake River dams. Is it providence or merely coincidence?

PSE’s Lower Snake River Wind Project will build on existing nearby wind facilities, Hopkins Ridge and Marengo – expanding the Pacific Northwest’s truly clean energy by 343 MW.  In addition to the numerous benefits associated with increasing our supply of domestic, carbon-free, salmon-friendly energy, these projects also contribute significant benefits by creating short and long-term jobs locally, generating income for local landowners, and increasing local tax revenues – all things we need more of these days!
Read more over at Working Snake River's blog.
 
 
 
 
 
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