The Great Salmon Closure

Below you will find the urgent “Salmon Closure 2008 – Never Again” action alert from the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations. This alert provides you with 10 concrete actions that you take NOW to restore Central Valley chinook salmon, now in an unprecedented state of collapse, and other imperiled salmon runs on the West Coast.

The Bush and Schwarzenegger administrations continue to blame “ocean conditions” for the Central Valley salmon collapse to escape any responsibility for fostering the abysmal conditions in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta that led to the collapse. However, Peter B. Moyle, U.C. Davis Professor of Fish Biology, says blaming “ocean conditions” for salmon declines is like blaming the iceberg for sinking the Titanic.

“Ocean conditions may be the potential icebergs for salmon populations, but the ship is being steered by us humans. Salmon populations can be managed to avoid an irreversible crash, but continuing on our present course could result in loss of a valuable and iconic fishery,” said Moyle.

There are a number of fresh water factors that have contributed to the collapse, but increases in water exports and the decline in water quality in the California Delta are undoubtedly the top two. This alert proposes immediate actions to address water exports and water pollution – and shows how you can pressure the federal government to deliver disaster relief to salmon fishing families and communities and Congress to conduct an oversight hearing on Pacific salmon management.

Please widely circulate this alert because action is needed to the save the salmon and communities that depend on them now.

Salmon Closure 2008 – NEVER AGAIN
Saving Fishing Communities — Bringing Back the Salmon  10 Actions You Need to Take Now! 

1. Contact U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, 1401 Constitution Avenue, Washington, DC 20230, requesting an immediate declaration of a Fishery Failure for the West Coast salmon fishery.

2. Contact your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative requesting federal disaster relief through a Congressional Appropriation for direct assistance to salmon fishing families and communities and, further, requesting Congressional oversight hearings on Pacific salmon management and the stock collapse.

3. Contact and attend meetings of the California State Water Resources Control Board (State Board), 1000 I Street, Rm. 1629 Sacramento, CA 95814 ( ) demanding in the development of the “San Francisco Bay / Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Estuary (Bay-Delta) Program – Strategic Workplan” ( a halt to pumping is mandated at the State (SWP) and Federal (CVP) Delta facilities when any salmon are present.

4. Contact the Chair of the State Board and the Director of the California Department of Fish & Game demanding the adoption, implementation and enforcement of freshwater flows into and through the Delta to San Francisco Bay necessary for the ecological functioning of this estuary and the protection and restoration of salmon.

5. Contact and attend meetings of the State Board demanding in open comment an end to the discharge of toxic fish killing water into the Delta and its tributaries. Send comments by May 30 to the Central Valley Regional Water Board (Susan Fregien, sfregien [at] calling for an immediate end to waste water discharge waivers

6. Contact and attend meetings of California’s Delta Vision Blue Ribbon Task Force, c/o CALFED Bay-Delta Program, 650 Capitol Mall, Fifth Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814 ( to oppose any peripheral canal and any further diversion of water from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta watershed; demand the Delta be made salmon-friendly again.

7. Contact the Director of California Fish & Game, and the Fish & Game Commission, 1416 Ninth Street, Sacramento, CA 95814, demanding all state salmon hatcheries be operated at full capacity to fully mitigate losses from dams and water projects and call further for the trucking of hatchery fish around the Delta for release into acclimation pens in San Francisco Bay – at least until such time as the pumping, flow and wastewater discharge issues in the Delta are resolved.

8. Contact Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Members of the California Legislature, State Capitol, Sacramento, CA 95814, demanding the State’s policy for doubling natural spawning salmon populations be met; contact U.S. Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, 1849 C Street, NW, Washington, DC 20240, demanding compliance with Federal policy (under the Central Valley Project Improvement Act) for doubling Central Valley natural spawning populations of anadromous fish (e.g., salmon).

9. Don’t forget the Klamath, even though it didn’t cause the 2008 closures. Contact Governor Ted Kulongoski, 160 State Capitol, 900 Court Street, Salem, OR 97301 and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, requesting state negotiators expedite the process for removal of the four PacifiCorp’s dams on the Klamath. PacifiCorp is owned by billionaire philanthropist Warren Buffett; contact Mr. Buffett at 1440 Kiewit Plaza, Omaha, NE 68131

10. Contact the Pacific and North Pacific Fishery Management Councils demanding an end to salmon bycatch in Pacific Whiting, Pollock and other fisheries.

For More Information on what you can do, contact the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations, P.O. Box 29370, San Francisco, CA 94129-0370, Tel: (415) 561-5080,

DAN BACHER can be reached at:





Dan Bacher is an environmental journalist in Sacramento. He can be reached at: Dan Bacher