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Save Our Wild Salmon

View the following set of factsheets that debunk misinformation and myths associated with the removal of the four lower Snake River dams (LSRDs). These factsheets provide clarity on the following topics and use credible data and statements from experts in the relevant fields. Please share these factsheets broadly, including with your elected officials.

Questions? Contact Abby Dalke, abby@wildsalmon.org

TABLE OF CONTENTS:
1. Salmon Returns 
2. Transportation
3. Economics
4. Flood Control
5. Irrigation
6. Energy
7. Carbon Emissions


SALMON RETURNS: 

When proponents of the LSRDs discuss salmon returns, they do not accurately reflect the status of the 13 ESA-listed threatened or endangered populations on the brink of extinction and minimize the impacts of dams on salmon survival.

The salmon returns factsheet debunks myths regarding the true status of salmon recovery and the role that the LSRDs play in preventing populations from reaching healthy and harvestable levels. The factsheet illustrates that LSRD removal is critical for restoring salmon runs by connecting fish to prime salmon habitat in central Oregon and central Idaho.

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TRANSPORTATION:

Advocates for the LSRDs often overstate the importance and use of barge transportation on the lower Snake River between Tri-Cities, WA and Lewiston, ID, and overlook the opportunities to create a more affordable, robust, modernized transportation system for important eastern and central Washington agricultural exports.

This factsheet debunks the myth that the LSRDs are needed for agricultural transportation. The factsheet clearly conveys that this is not true as barging has been in decline for the last two decades, and rail is already being widely utilized by farmers.

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ECONOMICS:

economics mythbustinglsr

Those who oppose the removal of the LSRDs often promote unfounded and exaggerated claims associated with the cost of dam breaching and dismiss the significant economic benefits of breaching the four lower Snake River dams.

This factsheet addresses myths about the true economic costs of continuing to maintain and operate the LSRDs. The factsheet demonstrates that the most cost-effective salmon recovery strategy is removing the LSRDs.

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FLOOD CONTROL: 

Politicians often falsely claim that the four lower Snake River dams are needed for flood control. This factsheet debunks the common narrative that the LSRDs have flood control capacity.

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IRRIGATION:

Advocates for the LSRDs often spread the false narrative that breaching the dams will significantly impact the region’s agriculture when we have clear data suggesting otherwise.

This factsheet addresses the myth that the LSRDs are extensively used for irrigation throughout the region by small farmers. The factsheet emphasizes that only one reservoir is actually used for irrigation and that nine prominent landowners manage nearly all of the irrigated land.

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ENERGY: 

energy lsrmythbusting

Defenders of the lower Snake River dams often use deceptive data to mislead the energy output of the four lower Snake River dams and often exaggerate the reliability and importance of the hydropower produced by the LSRDs.

View the following energy factsheet that debunks myths regarding the true output, reliability, and necessity of LSRD energy production. The factsheet highlights the seasonal energy generation of the LSRDs and emphasizes the diverse portfolio of new, affordable, and reliable clean energy sources that will replace the energy output of the lower Snake River dams.

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CARBON EMISSIONS:

Proponents of the LSRDs often deny the carbon impacts of hydropower entirely. Yet, there is clear scientific evidence that hydropower is a significant contributor of harmful carbon dioxide and methane emissions.

The carbon emissions factsheet debunks the myth that hydropower is a carbon free energy source. The factsheet explains the carbon impacts of methane emissions created by hydropower reservoirs.

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Download all factsheets

Questions? Contact Abby Dalke, abby@wildsalmon.org

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