Home > newsroom > Page
Hastings Decries Obama Administration Decision to Open Door to Snake River Dam Removal
Top Republican on House Natural Resources Committee says Administration “delivered just what dam removal extremists have been demanding”

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 15, 2009 - House Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member Doc Hastings (WA-04) released the following statement on the Obama Administration’s Columbia River salmon recovery biological opinion (BiOp) plan that was released today.  Hastings is an outspoken defender of the Northwest’s hydropower dams as clean, renewable sources of low-cost energy.  The district that Hastings represents in Congress includes the longest stretch of the Columbia River of any Representative, as well as one of the four threatened dams.

“The Obama Administration has put dam removal back on the table and delivered just what dam removal extremists have been demanding.  No one should be fooled by talk of dam removal as a last resort when the Obama Administration is immediately launching studies and plans for such action.

“The extremists who brought this lawsuit may be critical about this plan because dam removal wasn’t delivered on a silver platter with promises of wrecking balls arriving next week, but they got what they wanted from the Obama Administration and they’ll try and convince Judge Redden to give them even more. 

“For the past many months, I’ve restrained my public comments on the Obama Administration’s review of the salmon recovery plan for the Columbia River due to the hope they’d recognize the terrible economic toll that dam removal would have on the Northwest in the form of higher energy prices and thousands of lost jobs, and all for an extreme action that science hasn’t shown would lead to fish recovery.

“I warned the Obama Administration that opening the door to dam removal even just a crack would incite dam removal extremists to keep fighting and divert time, attention and resources away from real solutions to recover salmon. 

“It was only after dam removal was taken off the table by the prior Administration that the region experienced an unprecedented level of collaboration and broad agreement on a fish recovery plan that is grounded in science and not politics.

“The Obama Administration’s resurrection of dam removal has likely doomed the Northwest to years and years of fighting off attacks on our dams.

“It is such a sad, terrible waste that this battle is being reignited, but let there be no doubt that we’ll fight to save our dams in every way we can.  These dams are here to stay.”

# # #

Print version of this document


Contact: Charlie Keller (Personal Office) or Emily Lawrimore and Jill Strait (Committee) (202) 225-5816 (Personal Office) or (202) 226-2311 (Committee)

Latest News

Speaker Appoints Members to Represent Committee Jurisdiction in House-Senate Energy Conference

Today, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) appointed Republican lawmakers to serve on a conference committee charged with producing final energy and natural resource legislation (H.R. 8 / S. 2012), includi...... Read more

Bishop Issues Statement on PROMESA Advancing in House

The House Committee on Natural Resources today passed H.R. 5278, the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act, with a bipartisan vote of 29-10. Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) issued t...... Read more

Panel Highlights Technological Innovation in the 21st Century Mining Industry

Today, the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources held an oversight hearing on “Exploring 21st Century Mining Safety, Environmental Control, and Technological Innovation.” The new culture of col...... Read more

View All News