Looking Ahead

What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, man would die from a great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts, soon happens to man. All things are connected.

-Chief Seattle

Something is uniquely and persistently wrong in the Pacific Northwest, and it is affecting fisheries, our wildlife and wild fish recovery. A hot ocean, poor marine survival, issues with freshwater habitat related to blocked passage, high water temperatures, low flows, greatly simplified river structure, and balancing hatchery and wild production are just a few of the challenges facing our salmon and their ecosystem. Now we are learning that toxic materials in stormwater and wastewater are causing challenges for both juvenile and adult salmon in both urbanized and more rural areas, in both fresh and salt water.

What to do about these problems for our iconic symbols of the northwest, the prime food for orca whales, the basis of native culture, a top recreational fishery, the pink and silver that grace on our dinner plates, and the source of extra entertainment for every national sporting event to visit Seattle? Solutions are at hand but we need your help to implement them.

Restoring healthy wild populations and fisheries requires setting goals for salmon populations and their habitat with the same rigor and intensity that we set goals for jobs, housing, and transportation for our growing region. We can have salmon and a healthy economy, but it will take a commitment by all of us, and choices about where and how we grow. LLTK is leading efforts to stop the blame game, look at the facts, and get to work in new ways that make sure there is a future for salmon and people in a Northwest we can all embrace. Your help and involvement is critical to our success.