In consideration of the relicensing of Pacificorps Klamath River hydroelectric facilities, I am concerned that many groups and individuals may be placing too much attention on only the salmon. By no means am I an opponent of salmon. I too, wish to see the salmon populate the river in the most abundant way that nature intended. I agree that given the data and information we have compiled since the development of the Klamath hydroelectric project, that construction in present time would be completely different if not at all.
Many groups unfamiliar with the area have become involved in creating momentum in favor of not relicensing the project. They’ve taken the strict stance that all of the dams must come out in order to rehabilitate the Klamath River to its natural condition as it was nearly 100 years ago. They want to “bring the salmon home!” Let the truth be known, an opportunity like this only exists once every 50 years, the time it takes for the license to expire. I believe that whether the issue concerns our Klamath River or any other river in this great nation, a special interest group will no doubt take advantage of the opportunity no matter what the cause. In this case, they’ve created a vision of starving Native Americans, unable to feed themselves due to lack of salmon passage.
I encourage you to visit our area. I challenge you to find examples of such despair, for I very much doubt that it exists. I do however encourage you to take in the sites and serenity. Experience the strong sense of family in the surrounding communities who populate the areas. Enjoy the calmness and quiet of the existing lakes. Watch as the abundant wildlife cohabitates the nearly 100 year old ecosystem that has developed. I urge you, now is the time. If the outsiders have their way, all of this will be gone shortly. The bald eagles, the otters, the frogs, the turtles, the yellow perch that my 2 and 3 year old boys catch off of our dock.
The Klamath River Hydroelectric Project would be replaced by baron hill sides from receded lakes, erosion and a hundred years of silt flushed down a once flourishing river. We do not know what the Klamath River outcome will be once the dams are gone. We already made one mistake building them, we dare not make another one by taking them out.
Ryan L. Grizzell