The dispute has been addressed in many arenas, including the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), which will determine whether and on what terms PacifiCorp may obtain a new license for dam operation), court cases in the Federal District Court, meetings or negotiations outside of the court, and the media. Several federal departments have been involved in the Klamath dispute, including the Forest Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the Fish and Wildlife Service. State departments which have been involved include the California Department of Fish and Game and the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality.
Both the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service have said that PacifiCorp should provide upstream fish passage (Yardley 2006), and the National Marine Fisheries Service has advocated dam removal to allow upstream fish passage. The Bureau of Land Management and the Bureau of Reclamation each manage portions of the land on which the Klamath dams are situated, and the Bureau of Reclamation has sometimes been helpful in protecting fish habitat (Kandra v. United States). In Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations v. U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (2001) and PCFFA v. U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (2003), the court ruled that the Bureau of Reclamation did not violate the ESA or its federal water contract obligations by limiting the flows in the Klamath River to the current extent. In another important case, Kandra v. United States, plaintiffs challenged the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation's plan for reserving water for endangered species, and the court ruled again that the Bureau was not violating the Endangered Species Act (ESA) or National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). However, not all court cases have been fruitless for the coalition opposed to the Klamath dams. In McConnell v. PacifiCorp, Inc., plaintiffs claimed that PacifiCorp had polluted the Klamath River through its dam operations, poisoning fish and harming humans who consume these fish. The plaintiffs sought both injunctive and monetary damages; however, the court ruled that the plaintiffs could obtain monetary but not injunctive relief.
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