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September 29, 2006

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Klamath River Update: Federal judge backs fish ladders; ups odds for dam removal

In the see-saw but critically important battle over PacifiCorp’s Klamath River dams, anglers, environmentalist, and Indian tribes have claimed the latest victory. Only days after the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission largely sided with PacifiCorp’s less-costly (and less-effective, many would argue) proposal to truck salmon around the dams, Federal Judge Parlen McKenna has now sided with a plan to install fish ladders—a project so expensive to implement that it could push PacifiCorp to remove the dams altogether. That action would be an enormous boost to fish and fishermen, of course, but as the dam owners point out in this Los Angeles Times story, this protracted fight is far from concluded.

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