[env-trinity] NEWS - Federal Scientists Announce New Requirements that will Improve Long-term Survival of Salmon Populations

Byron Leydecker bwl3 at comcast.net
Thu Jun 4 15:44:58 PDT 2009

Apologies again for any multiple postings of this message.






Congressman George Miller


For Immediate Release: June 4, 2009

Press Office:  202-225-2095


Federal Scientists Announce New Requirements that will Improve Long-term
Survival of Salmon Populations


Miller instrumental in securing key review of earlier politically-tainted


Washington, DC - Congressman George Miller (D-Martinez), Mike Thompson (D-
Napa Valley) and Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento) released the following
statements in response to today's federal decision that the operation of the
Federal Central Valley Project and the California State Water Project will
need to be changed in order to protect and restore California's winter and
spring-run Chinook salmon, steelhead, green sturgeon and killer whales:


"With today's announcement, the Obama administration has set a science-based
course toward recovering the populations of wild salmon and steelhead that
are so critical to California's economy and environment," said Rep. George
Miller (D-Martinez), an expert in Congress on California water policy.
"After years of costly litigation and negligence and political tampering by
the Bush Administration, this is an important step towards the recovery of
California's fisheries and the environmental health of the Bay-Delta. It is
refreshing to see water management decisions that are based on science, not
on the whims of tainted political appointees like Julie MacDonald."


"This is an important step for restoring California's fisheries," said
Congressman Mike Thompson (D- Napa Valley).  "Salmon and steelhead are a
vital part of our ecosystem and contribute to our state's economy up and
down the coast.  Today's report is a breath of fresh air for Californians
who have grown used to water policies based on politics rather than on
science. Moving forward, we need to use this as a first step towards
building a water policy in California that is based on science and includes
all stakeholders at the table."


"I am glad to see that the Administration is taking critical action based on
sound science," said Representative Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento).  "Today's
opinion will go a long way towards preservation of not only a number of
threatened species, but also will play a role in the protection of the
entire watershed on which so many Californians rely.  It is key that as the
federal government moves forward to protect and restore California's
fisheries, water supply and the future of the Delta, that decisions are
based on sound science."


Today's announcement replaces a controversial 2004 biological opinion
stating that the state and federal agencies' plans to pump water to the
Central Valley would not harm wild fisheries. After the release of that
opinion, Reps. George Miller, Mike Thompson, Ellen Tauscher and other
members of Congress asked the Commerce Department's Inspector General to
investigate. That audit found that the Bush Administration violated standard
procedures and compromised the integrity of the biological opinion. Reports
from the Interior Department's Inspector General found that over the same
time period, several endangered species decisions were "inappropriately
influenced" by Julie MacDonald, the Bush administration's Deputy Assistant
Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.


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