NOAA Asks for Input From NW Salmon Stakeholders

Dec 12, 2012

Environmentalists in the Northwest are being offered an expanded role in shaping the long-term recovery plan for salmon and steelhead in the Columbia Basin.

Earthfix reporter Aaron Kunz has more.

Sockeye salmon swim the final leg of the journey to Redfish Lake in Idaho.
Credit Photo by Aaron Kunz / EarthFix

NOAA Fisheries is the federal agency in charge of salmon recovery in the Columbia and Snake rivers. The agency sent letters to hundreds of stakeholders in the Northwest. It invites them to provide input on the plan it is working on to restore salmon and steelhead populations.

Greg Stahl with Idaho Rivers United says he’s encouraged by the invitation. But he wouldn’t call it a game-changer until he’s sure that input from his group and others will influence the long-term salmon recovery plan.

Stahl: “This is a first and it’s a solid step toward a new approach. It’s one we hope will bear fruit.”

NOAA and other federal agencies are working to come up with a new version of their long-term salmon recovery plan. A federal judge in Portland has given them until 2014 to complete it.

Copyright 2012 Northwest Public Radio