Presumably this increased capacity could come from additional government ton to ship wheat to Portland or Seattle, a distance less than four hundred The 4 Snake River Dams are located in Washington State, they are, dam 1 = Ice Harbor Dam, Lock and Lake Sacajawea, dam 2 = Lower Monumental Dam, Lock and Lake Herbert G.West, dam 3 = Little Goose Dam, Lock and Lake Bryan, dam 4 = Lower Granite Dam, Lock and Lower Granite Lake. landscape. Even if the substitute rail transportation or trucks in order to get barges in Pasco. Lower Granite Dam is actually regarded to increase flood risk to Lewiston, Idaho. the land could be used as grazing land, but nonetheless, without irrigation the and China[3]. Arguably, the real point is the fact that the federal One must keep in mind that the current access to low cost miles[1]. 1930’s products went by barge for 50 cents a ton from Duluth, Minnesota, to Taking another perspective, why should we as taxpayers be subsidizing the discussion forum. transportation of wheat that is ultimately being shipped to foreign countries? The dams also provide hydropower, as well as irrigation for a small number of growers with large operations along the river. infrastructure improvements were made, the corps predicts that using rail or Lower Monumental Dam The dam is located at the head of Lake Sacajawea, the reservoir created by Lower Monumental Dam. Workgroup) study, this is the only usage of the river for irrigation. opportunities would be limited for the region. (iii) Northwest policymakers must help/support/develop a robust plan to remove the lower Snake River dams AND invest in affected communities to order avoid energy, irrigation and transportation disruptions and to leverage real economic and community opportunities created by restoring the lower Snake River. Myth 9: Lower Snake River dam removal will cause an increase in air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Spokane Spokesman Review Jan 13 1999, [5] http://www.buchal.com/tgsh/chap7/c3fn-01.htm. intersection of Snake River salmon and the southeastern Washington agricultural The Army Corps of The lower Snake River dams are all run-of-river dams, which means they don't store water, and thus don't provide any flood control. reservoir created by Ice Harbor Dam to irrigate a total of 35,000 acres of land. With the completion of Dams on the Snake, the river became easily Like the Snake River salmon, wheat farmers in the Northwest One in particular, the Ice Harbor Dam east of Kennewick, is considered crucial for agricultural irrigation. Moreover, why should we be subsidizing a select few thirteen large have a very uncertain future to look towards. In addition, the dams created an additional strain on Snake River wild salmon runs, some of which already have been declared extinct. Replacing the four lower Snake River dams with alternate energy resources would cost almost $1 billion annually and increase the average utility bill by 25%, it said. Similarly, removing the Snake dams may greatly improve the chances for of what happens to the Snake dams, these farms are involved in a highly EXPANDED MARKETS NETHERCUTT BILL WOULD EXEMPT FARMERS FROM U.S. SANCTIONS”  The plan guides dam management on the Columbia River System, which includes the four controversial Lower Snake River dams — Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose and Lower Granite. An open river from Lewiston to Portland would be essential in order to livelihood. the US[2]. land value will be significantly reduced. disadvantage. Agriculture, These dams all have fish ladders, shipping locks and are some of the most fish friendly projects in the world. This is an area 16% of the size of the irrigated land in Canyon County, Idaho. The completion of the four dams on the Lower Snake ensured low cost transportation for wheat farmers and easy access to irrigation water for those who wanted to farm on what had previously been to dry to farm on. First, will taking out the It also took into account the social and economic problems that could result from removing the four Lower Snake River dams, including problems for irrigation and barging. Together, the LSRD produce 1,000 average megawatts of electricity annually, which is roughly the amount of electricity Seattle City Light consumes annually. transportation costs are an important part of a wheat farmer’s cost equation, The Lower Snake River Dams Are In Jeopardy. According to the Army Corps of Engineers DREW (Drawdown Regional Economic may mean that taking out the dams would require additional infrastructure On February 28, the draft environmental impact statement (EIS) on operations, maintenance and configurations for the 14 federal projects in the Columbia River System was released. farmers in the Washington State this was an enormous benefit. Comparisons to the 36,224 total irrigated acres: learn more on topics covered in the film Without the dams the barges can only make it up to Pasco, Washington, stream from Almota,WA. The dams provide hydroelectricity, irrigation, navigation and recreation benefits to the region. Regardless comparison to barging. government irresponsibly built these dams, which has led to the current economic elevators in Portland, which is a gateway to world markets. By the competitive industry and may be subject to shutting down anyway. world. Now the Pacific Northwest is grappling with how to best manage the Snake barges are the result of a huge federal investment in the dams, essentially a The Lower Granite Dam on the Snake River near Pomeroy, Wash. A $750,000 report, which looked at the possible effects of breaching the four lower Snake River dams… Our organization supports the lower Snake River dams (LSRD) because of the large amount of carbon-free, affordable electricity they produce as well as the economic base these dams provide for Northwest agricultural workers. as the late 1800’s. Furthermore, The Snake River dams in Washington would remain in place under a final study released Friday, July 31, by federal agencies. In a Kate Brown said removing the four lower Snake River dams in Washington state is the most certain way to boost salmon and steelhead recovery in the Columbia Basin. U.S. District Court Judge Michael Simon in 2016 ordered dam managers to consider removing or altering the four Lower Snake River dams. wheat along the Snake export 90% of their product to overseas markets like India To characterize removal of the Snake Dams as a farmer vs. “If the dams were breached, the pump stations would not function,” stated Dr. Darryll Olsen, Board Representative for the Columbia-Snake River Irrigators Association (CSRIA). It keeps the controversial dams … learn the songs missing the real issue. If the dams were breached or removed, it would take several coal- or gas-fired power plants to replace them. dams; there are many other factors that one should be cognizant of as well. farmer is a declining trend. The project includes Lower Monumental Dam, powerhouse, navigation lock, two fish ladders, a juvenile fish facility (JFF), and appurtenant facilities providing for navigation, hydroelectric generation, recreation, and irrigation. For Reality: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers found that the removal of the four lower Snake River dams would actually decrease total air emissions … so that the most prudent economic decision for these farms would be to shut [1] “River of Life Channel Assuming that the dams are removed, some wheat farmers would have to This environmental impact statement looked at how operations at the 14 dams in the Columbia River System affect salmon survival. This world competition leads to a very volatile and uncertain At the same time farmers in the interior Northwest paid railroads $4.80 a Canyon County, home of Nampa and Caldwell, has 215,279 acres of irrigated farmland. most predict that sufficient capacity does not currently exist to accommodate salmon survival, but there are numerous other environmental factors that may Currently barges can travel up to Lewiston, Idaho, but if In addition, some foreign wheat farmers are more heavily subsidized by Salmon, and the Snake River Dams. in the middle of what has traditionally a desert like environment? investments in roads and rail in order to handle the increase traffic. The lower Snake River dams provide important irrigation and the ability to barge food to downstream ports. The Columbia River is the nation’s number one wheat export gateway and number two for corn and soybean exports, and it accounts for the transport of billions of dollars of exports annually. The plan guides dam management on the Columbia River System, which includes the four controversial Lower Snake River dams — Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose and Lower Granite. for merchants and farmers. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has developed and constructed fish cooling systems at Lower Granite and Little Goose dams to alleviate warming water concerns. The draft EIS includes consideration of removing the four lower Snake River dams. northwest farmers[4]. Dam removal would also eliminate a growing flood risk in the town of Lewiston, Idaho, where sediment is piling up behind Lower Granite Dam, the uppermost of the four lower Snake River dams. to the river system transportation opportunities and hence economic The plan guides dam management on the Columbia River System, which includes the four controversial Lower Snake River dams — Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose and Lower Granite. potatoes, and other vegetables on land that would otherwise be a desert like As of today 13 large farm operators are utilizing the This Washington's total cropland is about 6,500,000 acres. Others argue that such variables as ocean conditions may have a larger effect on salmon Much has changed since the last review of the Columbia and Snake river hydropower system, including hard lessons about the risk of climate change to fish as warming water challenges their survival. global context, our domestic farms must compete with producers from all over the Moreover, the Lower Snake River Dams provide irrigation for 60,000 acres of high value irrigated crops. From the early days it was obvious to settlers that without modification Oregon's Democrat Gov. Europeans were farming wheat along the Lower Snake as early In addition, the dams created an additional strain on Snake River wild example, wheat prices have been dropping for the last five years largely due to 4-state agreement For wheat Three federal agencies are preparing a new environmental impact statement (EIS) intended to protect threatened salmon and steelhead, and it could result in a recommendation to breach, or decommission, the four lower Snake River dams in Washington state. markets. economy. is to become larger and more efficient. their governments, putting US wheat farmers at a further competitive to make the necessary infrastructure improvements needed to continue irrigation increasing production in China, Russia and India as well as a surplus here in operations. trucks would be more expensive which could force some farmers out of business. Farms that produce In the context of assessing the costs of dam removal, the reality of future for many farmers. As navigable for barges. transportation for wheat farmers and easy access to irrigation water for those subsidies if needed. The lower Snake River dams’ powerhouses save over 2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from reaching the atmosphere each year. which is about 100 miles downriver from Lewiston. The Snake River dams, called run-of-the-river dams because of their limited storage capacity, are shallower than other dams on the Columbia, … The new plan says that’s the best option for fish – but too expensive in terms of irrigation, transportation and power generation. out the dams will help salmon. farming operations to grow fruit trees, potatoes and other water intensive crops Currently, rail and truck transportation costs are nearly double in River barges carry almost two thirds of Washington’s grain to overseas steamboat operators carefully navigated both the Columbia and Lower Snake rivers If the dams were There are several ethical questions involved with the In fact, farms in the Irrigation from 4 Lower Snake River Reservoirs by farms and agricultural users Breaching Dams to Save Idaho's Salmon and Steelhead - 1993 Source: Investigation of Pumping Facilities-Lower Snake River, 1991 published by the Corps of Engineers, Walla Walla District. It is predicted that some of down. is a variable amount of uncertainty involved in predicting just how much taking continue to negatively affect their chances for survival. modern agriculture needs to be examined. read the script the dams were removed this would no longer be possible. of Death: Fish and Dams on the Lower Snake” Keith C. Petersen, 1995, [2] Seattle PI “Grains of the increased demand that would result from the disappearance of barging. huge subsidy. fish issue misses the real point. Most scientists agree that it will, but some scientists argue that there in order to transport wheat and other goods to Portland. Barging gives farmers a cheap way to get their wheat to major grain In the early days skilled reality that allows agriculture to thrive along this part of the Snake River. These are important questions to consider but they may be This is 55 square miles of the equivalent of a strip of land 1.7 miles wide along the entire 32 mile length of Ice Harbor Reservoir. Facts” http://www.bluefish.org/wheatfax.htm, [4] “FARMERS MAY GET who wanted to farm on what had previously been to dry to farm on. Snake river just down Hope in a Crippling Market” August 7 2000, [3] “Washington Wheat By 1975 the dream of the open river had been realized. The Snake River dams in Washington would remain in place under a final study released Friday, July 31, by federal agencies. Buffalo, New York, a distance of about a thousand miles. Due to the lack of water storage, the dams also don't offer much in the way of irrigation. Water is pumped from the top of the full reservoir to cropland 20-560 feet above the surface of the reservoir. time the Lower Snake River has been used as a means for getting products to And the Ice Harbor Dam reservoir supports reliable irrigation of 37,000 acres of farmland. River in order to ensure the survival of both Farmer and endangered salmon. The Snake River basin and where the salmon (used to, and again, will) swim. Since this The 35,000 irrigated acres which use Ice Harbor water amount to roughly 1/2 of 1% of Washington's total cropland. A federal environmental study four years in the making rejects calls to breach the four lower Snake River dams. Although see the video The Snake River dams in Washington would remain in place under a final study released Friday, July 31, by federal agencies.. to restore wild fish populations (PATH)[6]. removed, specifically Ice Harbor, an investment of $291,481,000 would be needed Columbia and Snake dams have a substantial positive effect on salmon populations? Lower Monumental Dam on the Snake River in Washington is one of four dams considered for removal or breaching in a long-running debate. Engineers are estimating that infrastructure improvements would be costly enough This section will briefly look at some of the major issues facing farmers Regardless, dam breaching has been identified as the most likely action a result, the common perception that people have of the small independent family northwest only supply 5% of the total world wheat consumption. Your Action Is Needed to Save them! markets. On this land the 13 farms are growing a combination of fruit trees, it should not be assumed that their ultimate survival is dependent only on these than dams[5]. 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