Friday March 24, 2023

Eureka Times-Standard

Crews have begun working on removing four dams on the Klamath River which tribes and other groups have lobbied to take down for decades.

The early removal work involves upgrading bridges and constructing roads to allow greater access to the remote dams, which are expected to be fully down by the end of 2024. The dam removal on the 38-mile stretch of the river comes after an agreement between the last dam owner PacifiCorp, California, Oregon, the Yurok Tribe, the Karuk Tribe and a multitude of environmental organizations, with the goal of restoring salmon populations.

The Klamath River Renewal Corporation held a news conference on Thursday giving an update on their work in dismantling the dams and restoring habitats.

“We have broken ground on the world’s biggest salmon restoration project to date, and as most of you all know, this can’t come a moment too soon,” Craig Tucker, the Natural Resources Policy Advocate for the Karuk Tribe, said at the news conference. “Recent news stories have been circulating about how dismal the forecast for salmon will be this year in California. I expect there’ll be a near-total closure of all commercial and recreational fishing in the ocean this year. We expect there to be near-total closures of commercial tribal and recreational fishing in the Klamath River and similar in the Sacramento system. So salmon are in dire straits and projects like this are exactly what we need.”

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