Restore River and Save Salmon Haven

Target: Jenny Durkan, Mayor of Seattle, Washington

Goal: Deny license renewal for damaging dam that threatens future of Skagit River and marine life.

The Puget Sound’s biggest river has guided local native tribes, hosted five species of wild salmon, and provided majestic natural beauty to the city of Seattle. Now this mighty river is a whisper of its former self, largely dried-up and eerily quiet in many places. Several of the fish swimming these waters have landed on the endangered list, and orcas who once visited the Puget Sound in large numbers have dwindled as well. A broad alliance that includes the region’s Upper Skagit tribe, fisheries, and the Washington Department of Ecology want to save the Skagit River before it becomes a mere memory.

The majority of the damage is attributed to three dams built in the area. The city de-watered key parts of the river especially cherished by native tribes to make one of the creations, the Gorge Dam, possible. This structure is also believed to hinder the natural migration patterns of the salmon, which disrupts their breeding and poses a threat to entire species. In turn, marine life like orcas suffer because of the food chain’s disruption.

This dam’s licensing will be coming up for renewal, and advocates hope that increased public awareness about the debilitating effects of this barrier will change minds and hearts in the city. Sign the petition below to join in efforts to protect a gem of the Pacific Northwest.


Dear Mayor Durkan,

While federal authorities could impact the future of the Gorge Dam—and subsequently of the Skagit River—the decision will ultimately rest with the people and the leaders of Seattle. Please do not turn a blind eye to the pleadings of Skagit County commissioners, conservationists and scientists, impacted fisheries, and tribes that have called these beautiful lands home for thousands of years. The city apparently denied a request for a study about the effects of the Gorge Dam on the river and its wildlife.

A study would confirm findings of the National Marine Fisheries Service and highlight what is visible to the eyes of anyone who cares to see. The salmon that so many rely on for sustenance are rapidly disappearing and a once-mighty river is dwindling more by the day. Hydro-electric power should not and does not have to come at the expense of the environment it ironically could aid.

Work with conservationists and find a better way. Do not renew the Gorge Dam’s license. Help return the river and its inhabitants to their former glory.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Lester Blac


One Comment

  1. Paula Morgan says:

    With full respect to the Mayor, there are times when such grave decisions must be made with agencies which fully understand the problem and may offer solutions. We are in climate change and the salmon are of great importance. Without them so many animals will starve. Without them many occupations are ended as well as a food supply which must not be killed for a dam. There are other ways to achieve a goal and the easiest is not always a good answer. Salmon just can not be destroyed for a human convenience, no matter the convenience. Once this decision is made it can not be reversed.

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