The Nov. 28 front-page headline reads "Feds say dams helped to prevent more severe flooding." Is there any question or doubt this statement is not true?

The article further elaborates that without the dams, "the height of the Skagit River during (recent) flooding ... could have been 8 feet higher," topping the downtown floodwall and levees and "bringing catastrophe throughout Skagit County."

If there is any doubt this would not happen, one only has to look at the hundreds of acres of fertile farmland to the west and south of Mount Vernon ... alluvial soil deposits formed from eons of historical Skagit River flooding that occurred prior to the building of dams and levees.

Yet it was only this past August when numerous vocal malcontents — who doubtless do not reside in flood-prone areas — challenged Seattle City Light regarding relicensing of permits for operating these dams and further, actively promoted their removal — a dubious and very costly experimental effort to restore a historical fishery so that a few orca whales can enjoy gourmet salmon meals.

In addition to the loss of flood management capabilities, there would also be a significant reduction in regional electric power generation, the demand for which will only increase with population growth and the politics of diminishing fossil fuels.

The issue boils down to which has priority: humans or fish? Ideally, we would choose to benefit both, but when that is not possible geographically or economically, human interests must prevail.

Bruce Elliot

La Conner

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(1) comment


"so that a few orca whales can enjoy gourmet salmon meals"

You lost all credibility with that, pal. You mean so that orcas will stop starving to death ~ and salmons and the many other species that depend on them can stop being in such dire straits.

Humans ARE the problem. It's because our species wants have for so long been met at the expense of all other species that the world is in such a grim state.

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