Oregon Delegation Urges Fishery Disaster Declaration
The push for federal resources comes as salmon suffer consecutive years of decline due to the impacts of climate change
Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley is leading members of the Oregon delegation, including U.S. Senator Ron Wyden and U.S. Representatives Peter DeFazio, Kurt Schrader and Suzanne Bonamici, in urging the U.S. Department of Commerce to grant a catastrophic regional fishery disaster declaration for the State of Oregon, after three consecutive years of drought and changing ocean conditions have severely harmed salmon populations in the Pacific Northwest.
From 2013 to 2017, the commercial value of Chinook salmon was around $6.3 million annually for Oregon fisheries. But with the impacts of climate chaos impacting salmon populations, the economic value has dropped precipitously—down to $2.3 million in 2018, $2 million in 2019, and $1.4 million in 2020.
Read the full letter here.