Being Frank

  Oct/Nov 2021

We Have No Time to Slow Down Our Recovery

Editor’s Note: Whatcom Watch first starting printing “Being Frank” — written by Billy Frank Jr. — with the April 2004 issue and continued running his column until May 2009, when The Bellingham Herald starting printing it. We started offering it … Continue reading

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  September 2021

Lummi Nation Mourns the Late Lorraine Loomis

The Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission Chair leaves behind a legacy of salmon and treaty protection Lummi Nation joins the Swinomish Tribe in honoring the late Lorraine Loomis, the Northwest Indian Fisheries Chair, a treaty rights protector and salmon defender. The … Continue reading

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  September 2021

NWIFC Chairperson Lorraine Loomis Walks On

Lorraine Loomis, Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission chairperson and Swinomish fisheries manager, passed away August 10 at the age of 81. Loomis became fisheries manager for the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community after the 1974 Boldt decision that reaffirmed tribes’ treaty-protected fishing … Continue reading

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  September 2021

Before We Achieve “Net Ecological Gain,” We Need to Define It

When we talk about how to recover salmon — the math should be simple. The protection of existing habitat plus restoration of degraded habitat should equal a net gain in ecosystem function, leading to more fish. Yet every report produced … Continue reading

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  August 2021

Untangling Nooksack River Water Rights

The Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe are looking forward to the start of the process to untangle water rights and protect threatened salmon in the Nooksack River basin by finding out just how much water there is and who is … Continue reading

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  July 2021

Outdated Wastewater Facilities Undermine Water Quality Gains

We’ve seen some real progress over the past few years in efforts to prevent human waste from damaging the health of Puget Sound and the Washington coast. Still, we face a chronic problem with outdated wastewater treatment plants that undermine … Continue reading

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  June 2021

Seattle City Light Should Address True Costs of Skagit River Dams

It is time for Seattle City Light to address the damage its three hydroelectric dams have caused over the past 100 years to the Skagit River, the tribes who have always lived here and their treaty-reserved fishing rights. The utility … Continue reading

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  May 2021

Ocean Conditions, Lost Habitat Drive Salmon Concerns

Treaty tribes and our state salmon co-managers are looking ahead to another grim year of fishing because of poor ocean conditions that reduce marine survival, and the ongoing loss of freshwater habitat. Higher marine water temperatures, changing currents and a … Continue reading

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  April 2021

Billy Frank Jr. Statue Gaining Momentum

Treaty Indian tribes in western Washington strongly support proposed state legislation to place a statue of the late natural resources and civil rights champion Billy Frank Jr. to replace Marcus Whitman in our nation’s capital. We think Washington should join … Continue reading

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  March 2021

Increased Outdoor Recreation Impacting Tribal Treaty Rights

Already robust levels of hiking, camping, boating and every other kind of outdoor recreation in our region has exploded during the Covid-19 pandemic as many try to cure the effects of cabin fever. Increased outdoor recreation has led to unprecedented … Continue reading

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