Fisheries Service releases yet another Northwest salmon recovery plan
The third draft of a federal plan for protecting endangered salmon and steelhead in the Northwest’s Columbia and Snake Rivers does not propose breaching the four hydroelectric dams that block the waterways, frustrating activists who have long lobbied for the dams’ removal. The National Marine Fisheries Service says the plan for helping the salmon is significantly improved over the previous version, which was found to violate the Endangered Species Act, but environmental groups aren’t so sure. “It’s the same pig in a different tutu, but it still can’t dance,” says Todd True of green group Earthjustice. The salmon recovery plan will go through a comment process and require a judge’s approval. Dilly-dallying isn’t recommended: Northwest wild salmon populations are at 5 percent of historic levels.