4 Jun 2010, 10:04am
BPA Dams Judicial incompetence
by admin

Another Bubbleheaded Salmon Lawsuit

The usual suspects have filed another lawsuit to force water spillage over the dams of the State of Washington. The ostensible purpose is to “save salmon” but in fact water spillage kills salmon smolts. The practical result, if the lawsuit is successful, will be to reduce renewable energy production, increase electricity rates, and kill fingerling salmon on their way to the ocean.

Groups sue for more water over dams for salmon

By PHUONG LE, Seattle PI, June 3, 2010 [here]

SEATTLE — Conservation and fishermen’s groups sued the state Department of Ecology on Thursday to get more water to spill over dams along the Columbia and Snake Rivers, protecting salmon and steelhead.

The groups want the state to change its water quality standards so more water can be spilled over federal dams. They say releasing more water over the dams - rather than running it through turbines - improves salmon’s chances of surviving their migration.

Earthjustice filed the lawsuit in Thurston County Superior Court on behalf of the Northwest Sportfishing Industry Association, the Association of Northwest Steelheaders, the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations, the Institute for Fisheries Resources and Idaho Rivers United.

“We think this standard is badly needed to help imperiled salmon and steelhead, and we want Washington to do the right thing,” said Amanda Goodin, an Earthjustice attorney.

Ecology denied the groups’ latest petition in May, citing concerns about possible harm to other aquatic life. The state said at the time that the change may provide a small benefit to salmon but may also harm other animals.

In response to Thursday’s lawsuit, Ecology said it follows federal clean water rules and noted that it already allows more water to spill over dams in certain situations.

“Ecology does not believe the overall benefits of additional spill versus detrimental effects to aquatic life is clear or sufficient to justify a rule revision of the water quality standards,” the agency said in a statement.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Bonneville Power Administration control the level of spill at federal dams along the Snake and Columbia Rivers, but they must also meet state water quality standards, according to the lawsuit.

The dispute here involves limits on dissolved gases. Water spill can cause high levels of gases in the river. … [more]

Water spillage means water to the hydroelectric turbines will be shot off and the downstream flow forced over the tops of the dams. That increases the air in the water (dissolved gas supersaturation) below the dams and causes “gas-bubble disease” in the salmon smolts (those that survive the fall). Spill mortality is at least twice the mortality of smolts that pass through turbines. Furthermore, the dams now have smolt diversion systems that direct the smolts away from the turbines and into bypass spillways.

This issue is old. Spillage was first proposed in the early 1990’s and has been proven to kill smolts at high rates. Spillage is expensive, too. The water that does not go through turbines does not produce electricity.

Moreover, returns of adult salmon are achieving record rates due to the cool ocean conditions (caused by the Pacific Decadal Oscillation) [here].

The usual sue-happy groups do not actually represent fishermen or their interests. Their agenda is to destroy the economy of the Pacific Northwest for the usual Marxist revolutionary reasons. The bubbleheads also hope to garner $millions in free handouts from the Federal Government in the form of Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA) funds.

As so it goes. The anarchists use the Justice System to monkeywrench the entire region, cut off renewable energy, kill baby salmon, and line their pockets from the Federal Treasury. Congress sits there dumbfounded, or worse, fully complicit in the anarchists’ strategy.

In the end it’s the public that’s bubbleheaded for allowing these destructive actions to continue.

3 Jun 2010, 12:08pm
Salmon counts
by admin
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Spring Chinook Report June 2nd

As of yesterday (June 2nd) 244,362 adult spring Chinook salmon have passed the Bonneville Dam, heading upstream in the Columbia River system to spawn.

That number is more than twice the number of adult salmon passing Bonneville last year by June 2nd (114,525), and 1.5 times the ten-year average to-date (167,834).

See [here] for more salmon graphs.

See [here] for more salmon statistics.

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