The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has approved decommissioning of Pacific Corps Klamath Dams in Northern California.
It comes after years of demands from tribes and environmental groups.
Christina Aanestad reports.
The largest dam demolition and river restoration plan in the world is closer to becoming reality.
U.S. regulators approved the removal of Pacific Corps’ four aging Klamath Dam structures.
It will reopen hundreds of miles of California river to imperiled salmon after years of advocacy by environmental groups and California Native American Tribes including the Hoopa and Karuk Nations.Richard Glick is chair of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). “The dam removals make sense in large part as it relates to fish and wildlife protection. I think also the discussion of the impact on tribes and the ability for tribes to be able to have their practices and traditions improved as it relates to water quality and fisheries and other resources. I think it’s an important issue.” The Klamath Dam deconstruction will also return the lower half of California’s second-largest river to a free-flowing state for the first time in more than a century. The Klamath River Renewal Corporation – a non-profit group will lead the dam removal effort.
The states of California and Oregon will take over PacifiCorp’s license for the purpose of demolishing the dams.
Preparations to remove the dams will begin in 2023 with deconstruction by 2024.
The Navajo Nation Council has chosen a new speaker.
As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, it follows the resignation of the former legislative leader just days before the November election.
Delegates elected Otto Tso as speaker during a special session in the tribal capital of Window Rock.
He’ll lead the 24th Navajo Nation Council in its final days before the next one is seated in January.
Navajo Chief Justice JoAnn Jayne administered the oath of office in council chambers Wednesday, and Tso pledged to continue providing vital services to the tribe and to create a smooth transition into the next council.
He’ll head all departments and programs in the Navajo Nation’s legislative branch.
Tso represents Tuba City, the reservation’s largest community, and has served on multiple committees including as vice-chair of the Law and Order Committee.
It comes after Seth Damon’s resignation as speaker earlier this month.
In October he was photographed slumped over and appearing inebriated in front of a gambling machine in Las Vegas while on a family trip.
He later admitted to being intoxicated, and resigned as speaker as the council considered legislation, sponsored by Tso, to put him on indefinite leave.
Tso will serve until January 10, 2023 when the next council begins and delegates will again elect a speaker.
South Dakota Public Broadcasting’s C.J. Keene has more.
Braun, a citizen of the Cheyenne River Sioux Nation, passed away in her home at the age of 53.
Braun was an organizer for the Indigenous Environmental Network.
A statement from the organization says Braun was a proud servant for her people.
She was a nonviolent direct-action organizer who trained hundreds of people over the years.
Her work including organizing a protest against the Keystone XL pipeline near Cannonball, North Dakota in 2016.
Friend of Braun and fellow activist Madonna Thunder Hawk says Braun was an authority outside the public eye.
“She kept track behind-the-scenes what the different corporations were doing, what the legislative issues are, and those types of things that had to do with public utilities. Those kinds of legislative updates. She kept up with that. She did the research, and she stayed current, and she kept the rest of us in the know.”
Thunder Hawk reflected on the weight of Braun’s contributions.
“She’s going to be a part of our modern-day American Indian history. She made her place in the protection of our world as Indigenous people of this land. She’s made her mark for the time she was here on this Mother Earth – she made it count.”
Funeral arrangements for Braun have not yet been announced.
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