Monday, August 8, 2011
Clean Water Act Exemption for Logging Threatens Wild Salmon
An new bill proposed by Oregon Senator Ron Wyden would exempt logging roads and the sediment they pour into watersheds throughout the west from regulation under the Clean Water Act, posing a threat to the recovery of depressed salmon populations throughout the region. Logging and the attendant road construction has been a major factor in the degradation of freshwater habitat critical to the survival of wild salmon and any path towards salmon recover in the Northwest MUST include more sustainable logging and road building practices. Erosion from logging and logging roads dramatically increases the quantity of fine sediment in watersheds, smothering incubating salmon eggs, reducing habitat diversity as well as pool depth and frequency and increasing water temperatures. Logging has been implicated in salmon declines for decades and some of our most tragic case studies of decline; from Oregon's coastal coho to the utter collapse of the Deer Creek summer run on Washington's North Fork Stillaguamish were driven largely by terrible logging practices. More information in a letter to the editor by a group of preeminent Oregon fish conservationists.
Take Action at Oregon Wild's website: