Saturday, October 09, 2004

Expensive Fish

Here's part of an article I just ran across.

"While we all want to save endangered fish, there is a lot of waste in the fish program. A good example: In August, Bonneville Power Administration was forced to spill water at the upper Columbia River dams for fish. Since this water was spilled it could not be used for power generation. The approximate cost of this spill was $38,000,000 to Northwest ratepayers. It resulted in an extimated 5 endangered Snake River Chinook being saved (costing $3,500,000 per fish), and 2,400 non-listed upper Columbia fall Chinook, a stock that will be harvested at a 50% rate when returning (at $15,000 per fish)."

Living in the NW this effects me directly, for the rest of you it may not effect you at all.

I wonder sometimes if our costly "save the whatever" is worth it. Species have come and gone over the ages. Some of these have been caused by man, but so what, are we really so much worse off because we don't have the doodoo bird or the passinger pigeon? Where is the balance between good use of "our" money and saving a spotted owl?