Quotes from Northwest and National Leaders

Here are some quotes regarding the four lower Snake River dams, salmon recovery, and clean energy from leaders around the country.

"We have built one dam [in the USA] for every day since Jefferson signed the Declaration of Independence... Surely among 75,000 there are a few mistakes." -- Former Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt

"The bottom line is clear. The financial cost of maintaining and operating the four lower Snake River dams far outweigh their benefits."
- David Jenkins, Republicans for Environmental Protection

"Removing the four Lower Snake River dams is, at least for the Snake River salmon listed under the Endangered Species Act, the single most beneficial action we can take. If we can move beyond the symbolism of the four Snake River dams … breaching emerges as a responsible and cost-effective option."
- Former Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber in a 2000 speech to the American Fisheries Society

“If salmon are to survive climate change, four of these dams on the lower Snake River must go. Once the dams are removed, the salmon would be able to reach the ark, and scientists give such a plan a 50% to 90% probability of restoring productive populations. If the dams stay, the salmon will lose their best chance to survive global warming.”
- Carl Pope, Executive Director, Sierra Club

“If we are going to remove dams, then the country is going to have to pay the communities that are impacted. I don’t know any farmers who wouldn’t want their river’s health restored if they were made whole.”
Former Montana Governor Marc Racicot

My hope is for a President who is willing to work with me and the other citizens of Washington State in a constructive fashion to address the complex issues related to recovering the once mighty runs of wild salmon on the Snake and Columbia Rivers.  I believe...that the people of Washington deserve nothing less.”
- U.S. Senator Patty Murray

"We in Washington State recognize that the health of our salmon populations and the health of our state’s economy are intertwined. Restoring and protecting our salmon populations and their habitats do more than just maintain our rivers, streams and salmon. They maintain our Northwest way of life.”
- U.S. Senator Patty Murray

"Electric ratepayers keep paying and paying for measures that can't possibly restore threatened and endangered Columbia Basin fish or help those living, working and doing business in salmon-dependent communities."
- Sara Patton, Northwest Energy Coalition

"Taxpayers cannot afford to continue to foot the bill for the expensive failures of the status quo."
- Steve Ellis, Taxpayers for Common Sense

“Another serious threat to the Columbia river fishery is the proposed construction by the U.S. Army Engineers of Ice Harbor and three other dams on the lower Snake River between Pasco., Wash., and Lewiston, Idaho, to provide slackwater navigation and a relatively minor block of power. The development would remove part of the cost of waterborne shipping from the shipper and place it on the taxpayer, jeopardizing more than one-half of the Columbia River salmon production in exchange for 148 miles of subsidized barge route... This policy of water development, the department maintains, is not in the best interest of the over-all economy of the state. Salmon must be protected from the type of unilateral thinking that would harm one industry to benefit another... Loss of the Snake River fish production would be so serious that the department has consistently opposed the four-phase lower dam program that would begin with Ice Harbor dam near Pasco.”
- State of Washington Department of Fisheries, Annual Report, 1949

If the salmon and steelhead are running, then as far as I am concerned, God knows that all is well in His world...the health of the environment is good if the salmon and steelhead are around. It is that simple.

- Former Oregon Governor Tom McCall

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