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Karuk Tribe Formally Approves Klamath Restoration Agreements: Tribal Council Votes Unanimously to Sign Agreements, Restore Klamath River


January 28, 2010 -- Orleans, CA – Tonight the Karuk Council voted unanimously in favor of signing the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement and Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement. Together, the two agreements would effect the largest dam removal effort in US History, balance water use in the Klamath Basin, and resolve many longstanding conflicts between tribal and agricultural communities within the basin.
According to Tribal Chairman Arch Super, “it has been a long time coming. We believe these agreements are the key to restoring our river, our fisheries, and our culture. We greatly appreciate the efforts of neighboring Tribes, PacifiCorp, conservation groups, federal and state agencies, and the agricultural community. It took us all a long time to learn that in order to fix our collective problems, we have to work together. ”
The Karuk are the fourth party to the negotiation to formally approve the Agreements. Over the last several days, other parties to the negotiation also agreed to sign including the Klamath Tribes of Oregon, the Yurok Tribe, Humboldt County, Klamath Irrigation District and the Klamath Drainage District. Additional parties will vote in coming days.
Groups expect that a formal signing ceremony will be held next month; however details have not yet been released.
After the Agreements are signed, groups still must pass federal legislation to implement the terms of the Agreements and environmental reviews are required by federal law before dams can be removed. “Although we are proud of what we have accomplished thus far, a lot of hard work lies ahead,” added Super.
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Editor’s note: for more information including previous press releases, copies of the agreements, summaries and fact sheets, go to www.klamathrestoration.org