Dam Removal Simpson Pt 2

Dam Removal Simpson Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
I’m Bob Larson. Removing four dams on the Lower Snake River has seen a lot resistance over the years, but last month Idaho Representative Mike Simpson shocked many by proposing taking out earthen berm around the dams and allowing the river and the endangered salmon to run free.

The Idaho Republican says it’s not something he would have suggested in the past, but one question kept eating at him …

SIMPSON … “Why does it make sense that we send 487-thosuand acre feet of water down a river, to flush salmon over a dam, to recover salmon, which is not doing it, yet we send that water down there. And, what it really does is keep the pools behind the dams high so that Washington grain farmers can take that water out of those pools to irrigate their grain and compete against our farmers. I don’t know that that really makes sense for Southern Idaho.”

So, Simpson asks, what does Idaho get? …

SIMPSON … “We get 8% of the power, that comes to Idaho from those dams. They mostly benefit Washington not Idaho. We get barging, which we can replace, in fact, get grain down the river at a cheaper cost to the farmer, but that’s the two things that we get out of it, barging and 8% of the power.”

Idaho, Simpson says has the most to lose …

SIMPSON … “It seems to me that almost all the costs of these dams comes from Idaho’s second

Congressional district, really all of Idaho, but particularly the second Congressional District, and all the benefits go to Washington. That just doesn’t seem to make sense to me.”

Listen tomorrow for more.

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