Scales of Justice
In a decision celebrated by salmon advocates, a federal judge ruled on Friday that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been violating the Clean Water Act with its four dams on the lower Snake River in Washington state. She agreed with enviros that the dams raise water temperatures and dissolved nitrogen levels beyond standards set to protect salmon, and she gave the agency 60 days to get its act together and develop a new operating plan for the dams. In other happy salmon news, Northwest Indian tribes have reached agreements with the states of Oregon and Washington on how many fish to harvest from the Columbia River. The agreements allow higher harvests in years of abundant salmon returns and restricted harvests in years when returns are scarce.