An update from a friend up north regarding an agency cat fight around some seriously flawed Susitna Dam science. This would be downright comical if it were not for the fact that the agency behind the flawed science wants to build a massive 735-foot, 600-megawatt-capacity dam on the Susitna.
Over the past few weeks there's been some sparing between Alaska Energy Authority (AEA), those who want to build Susitna Dam, and federal agencies. All this lead up to meetings designed to review AEA's first year of research on the Susitna. The fish stuides in particular caused quite a stir. Perhaps the issues are too many to count. NMFS and USFWS called out AEA for for misidentifying a high percentage fish, failing to properly study salmon spawning locations, and erroneously measuring fish abundance. In general, NMFS states that AEA did not coordinate between its own various studies or meet its own sampling goals or overall study objectives.
To make a long story short, after spending nearly $200 million of state funds AEA and consultants (many of whom also worked on Pebble) can't tell the difference between a chinook and a coho. They were so confused in their studies that they went so far as to call them "Chinoho."
This matter came up in this week's meetings, with AEA arguing how hard it is to tell the difference between Chinook and coho juveniles. Sue Walker from NMFS replied by saying, "While it is true that it can be difficult at times to distinguish between Chinook and coho juveniles, we all agree that what you are calling a "chinoho" is really a coho. That is pretty clear."
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s Striped Bass Management Board will meet ten seven days from today.
In roughly 240 hours, we’ll know whether managers have taken meaningful steps to conserve and hopefully restore the Atlantic migratory striped bass stock, or whether they abandoned their obligation to the public at large and chose to pander to the small minority of people who profit from killing this public resource.
LINK (via: One Angler's Voyage)