Washington loses fight, might pay up to $2B to save salmon

A panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last year affirmed a lower court’s 2013 ruling ordering the state to fix or replace hundreds of culverts — large pipes that allow streams to pass beneath roads but block migrating salmon.

The group represents 21 tribes in western Washington that challenged the state over the culverts in 2001, part of decades-long litigation over tribal fishing rights.

“Ordering a State to spend money on something that will make no difference is an abuse of discretion,” the state argued in asking for another hearing.

[…] several judges disagreed, said the panel’s opinion “sets up precedent that could be used to challenge activities that affect wildlife habitat in other western states.”

Original published: 2017-05-20 01:12:09 Read the full Seattle News here

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