For Immediate Release, February 23, 2021

Contact:

Sophia Ressler, Center for Biological Diversity, (206) 399-4004, sressler@biologicaldiversity.org
Robb Krehbiel, Defenders of Wildlife, (206) 883-7401, rkrehbiel@defenders.org
Chris Connolly, Endangered Species Coalition, (781) 367-1256, cconnolly@endangered.org
Julian Matthews, Nimiipuu Protecting the Environment, (509) 330-0023, protectingnimiipuu@gmail.com
Alex Craven, Sierra Club, (802) 999-8967, alex.craven@sierraclub.org

Online Rally for Snake River Restoration, Dam Removal to Be Held Feb. 25

SEATTLE— A coalition of conservation groups will hold a large virtual rally Feb. 25 to encourage national leaders to support restoration of the Snake and Columbia River ecosystems, which includes removal of the four lower Snake River dams.

The four outdated dams on the lower Snake River have played a large part in wiping out once-thriving Chinook salmon populations as well as endangered steelhead. With its primary food source in such steep decline, the Pacific Northwest’s Southern Resident killer whale population is in peril of imminent extinction.

Most fisheries scientists are in agreement that removal of the four dams plays a vital role in saving these endangered species and would also help to restore the ecosystem and in turn further benefit many other species that also call this area home.

The groups are calling on Congress to take seriously any proposal that includes removing the dams, honors tribal sovereignty and treaty rights, and includes mitigation for disrupted economies and communities during and after removal of the dams.

What: A virtual rally to generate commitment from Northwest congressional members to publicly support removing the four lower Snake River dams

When: Thursday, Feb. 25 at 5 p.m.

Where: Click here to join.

Who: The rally is open to the public and includes a variety of speakers, including Julian Matthews and Lucinda Simpson, enrolled Nez Perce and board members of Nimiipuu Protecting the Environment; orca scientist Dr. Deborah Giles and her whale-scat sniffing dog Eba; Fred Heutte from the Northwest Energy Coalition; and music provided by Casey Neill. The event is hosted by the Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife, Endangered Species Coalition, Nimiipuu Protecting the Environment, Sierra Club and Washington Environmental Council.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.7 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With over 1.8 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit defenders.org/newsroom and follow us on Twitter @Defenders.

The Endangered Species Coalition is a national network of conservation, scientific, education, religious, sporting, outdoor recreation, business and community organizations — and hundreds of thousands of individual activists and supporters — all dedicated to protecting our nation’s disappearing wildlife and last remaining wild places. www.endangered.org

Nimiipuu Protecting the Environment is a Nez Perce (Nimiipuu) Tribal, member-run 501C3 environmental nonprofit that is committed to the protection of hunting, fishing and gathering rights of the Nimiipuu (Nez Perce) and the protection of the Environment for all whether within the 1855 Treaty area or beyond. We believe the Creator provided the Mother Earth for all to live and thrive and all species have an inherent right to continue on this planet. Since our founding in 2015 we have worked with Tribal and non-Tribal youth adults on education and activism in our community and within the U.S. and Canada. We work with Indigenous groups and nations and Environmental groups within the U.S./Canada.

The Sierra Club is America’s largest grassroots environmental organization, with more than 3.8 million members and supporters. In addition to protecting every person's right to get outdoors and access the healing power of nature, the Sierra Club works to promote clean energy, safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and legal action. For more information, visit www.sierraclub.org.

Washington Environmental Council is a nonprofit, statewide advocacy organization that has been driving positive change to solve Washington’s most critical environmental challenges since 1967. Our mission is to protect, restore, and sustain Washington’s environment for all.