Earthjustice Statement on Trump Administration Record of Decision for Columbia Hydropower Operations

Agencies approve status quo operations that will fail to save endangered salmon


Maggie Caldwell, Earthjustice, (347) 527-6397

Today the Trump administration issued its final Record of Decision in the Columbia River System Operations National Environmental Policy Act process. The Record of Decision, issued jointly by the Army Corps, the Bureau of Reclamation, and the Bonneville Power Administration, is the agencies’ formal decision to largely maintain status quo operations that have pushed Snake River salmon to the brink of extinction.

The following is a statement from Todd True, Earthjustice attorney, who brought the original legal challenge on behalf of conservation and fishing groups, in conjunction with the Nez Perce Tribe and the State of Oregon:

“This is the final step in a four year process that has failed our region in profound ways. The differences between the plan adopted by these agencies today and the plan the court rejected in 2016 are hard to discern. And the plan the court rejected in 2016 was not materially different from plans the court had rejected in 2003, 2005, 2009, and 2011. To say we need a new approach, that we need leadership from our elected representatives, and that we need to find a solution that works for all of us is to state the obvious. And it is equally obvious that there is great urgency to do this — for salmon, for orcas, and for the future of our region.”

Chinook Coho Salmon
To reach spawning grounds upstream, salmon have to make it past the dams. (Bill Perry / Getty Images)

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