Huffman files bill to protect, bolster salmon rivers

Seafood Source –

A California congressman on Thursday, 17 October filed a bill in Congress that he claims would restore and protect the country’s salmon rivers and watersheds.

By drafting H.R. 4723, dubbed the Salmon Focused Investments in Sustainable Habitats (Salmon FISH) Act, U.S. Representative Jared Huffman in a statement said he wants to make the rivers that support salmon populations more resilient. The Democrat’s bill would call on NOAA Fisheries and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to designate core abundance areas as “Salmon Conservation Areas” and the purest ones as “Salmon Strongholds.”

Those areas would be protected to ensure future government actions do not threaten their salmon populations. Huffman’s bill would also allow state governments, tribal nations, non-governmental organizations and the general public to nominate areas for designation.

The bill also includes a grant program that would run for the next five years to improve on conservation and restoration efforts.

“Salmon have great ecological, cultural, and economic importance, and are a symbol of the American West,” Huffman said. “This is certainly the case for the fisheries and communities in my district, including many tribes that have relied on salmon since time immemorial. The Salmon FISH Act will protect and restore the outstanding salmon habitats that still remain so that they can not only support thriving wild salmon, but also the communities and economies that depend on them.”

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