Save our orcas, climate, and dollars: free the Snake!

At our August 5 general meeting, OCA members by consensus adopted a resolution calling for the immediate removal of the four lower Snake River Dams and their replacement by clean power. Removing the lower 4 Snake River Dams will benefit the Pacific Northwest in several ways:

  • Freeing the Snake River ensures restoration of fish populations and marine ecosystems. Lack of chinook salmon from the Columbia River system is a principal reason for the decline of the Southern Resident Orcas.
  • A flowing river will invite local community and tourist recreation.
  • Land reclamation provides ground for new agricultural development with its jobs.
  • Tax and ratepayers will no longer pay for unnecessary, underperforming dams and the future burden of maintenance costs. These dams have outlived their initial intended purpose and are becoming a cost-prohibitive maintenance issue.
  • Energy output from these dams is not required to support the grid, and subsidies to this inefficient technology suppresses available clean energy capacity. – comprehensive, in-depth website devoted to the issue

Orca facts from the Center for Whale Research

Southern Resident Killer Whale Synopsis – Debra Ellers, North Olympic Orca Pod

The Case for Breaching the 4 Lower Snake River Dams – Orca Network

Comments to Orca Task Force from the President of Advocates for the West in Idaho

Greenhouse Gas Impacts of the L4SRDs – John Twa, Mechanical Engineer

Ratepayers subsidize dirty power from the L4SRDs while better green power is available

Seattle Times: Controversy over orcas vs. dams

Actions to save the Orcas, from 350 Seattle: Call Governor Inslee at 360-902-4111 and ask him to take action immediately. Thank him for working to protect orcas, and tell him you support stronger action, now, without delay:

  • Issue an emergency moratorium on new fossil fuel traffic in the Salish Sea.
  • Define a rigorous and mandatory ‘Oil Spill Clean Up Rate’ to stop Trans Mountain tar sands crude oil from coming through Washington State.
  • Stop fuel exports at March Point and Cherry Point, and the construction of the LNG facility in Tacoma.
  • Stand in support of Whatcom County’s existing moratorium on new fossil fuel infrastructure.
  • Call on BC Premier John Horgan take swift action against fish farms.
  • Restore Chinook spawning grounds by breaching of the lower four Snake River dams.

Online petitions:

Whom to call or contact and ways to provide your opinion: Sample comments and link here: “Public Feedback: Southern Resident Killer Whale Recovery and Task Force”

Governor J. Inslee
phone: (360) 902-4111



Senator Patty Murray (425) 259-6515
fax: (509) 624-9561



Senator Maria Cantwell (202) 224-3441
fax: (202) 228-0514



NOAA, Barry Thom (503) 231-6266


Please tell the Army Corps of Engineers to supplement the 2002 EIS promptly and use Alternative 4 to breach the 4 Lower Snake River Dams in 2018.


US Army Corps of Engineers (202) 761-0000

Lt. General Todd T. Semonite
Commander and Chief of Engineers

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
441 G Street NW
Washington, DC 20314-1000

Northwest Division, USACE

Brigadier General Helmlinger
PO Box 2870
Portland OR 97208-2870

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