33rd Anniversary of the Police Raids over Salmon Fishing at Restigouche

Documentary available online here.

In Incident at Restigouche, filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin delves into the history behind the Quebec Provincial Police (QPP) raids on the Restigouche Reserve on June 11 and 20, 1981. The Quebec government had decided to restrict fishing, resulting in anger among the Micmac Indians as salmon was traditionally an important source of food and income. Using a combination of documents, news clips, photographs and interviews, this powerful film provides an in-depth investigation into the history-making raids that put justice on trial.

via @Mimiges

Materials in Trinity River Flow Suit

Here are the materials in San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority v. Jewell (E.D. Cal.):

DCT Order Lifting TRO and Denying Preliminary Injunction

Water Districts Motion

Fisheries Opposition

Hoopa Opposition

Interior Opposition

Leshy Memorandum

Water Districts Reply

News coverage here.

Nisqually Tribe Addresses Climate Change Impacts on Nisqually River

From the NYTimes (link to article here).

Here’s an excerpt:

For 10,000 years the Nisqually Indians have relied on chinook salmon for their very existence, but soon those roles are expected to reverse.

Based on current warming trends, climate scientists anticipate that in the next 100 years the Nisqually River will become shallower and much warmer. Annual snowpack will decline on average by half. The glacier that feeds the river, already shrunken considerably, will continue to recede.

Play the scene forward and picture a natural system run amok as retreating ice loosens rock that will clog the river, worsening flooding in winter, and a decline in snow and ice drastically diminishes the summer runoff that helps keep the river under a salmon-friendly 60 degrees.

To prepare for these and other potentially devastating changes, an unusual coalition of tribal government leaders, private partners and federal and local agencies is working to help the watershed and its inhabitants adapt. The coalition is reserving land farther in from wetlands so that when the sea rises, the marsh will have room to move as well; it is promoting hundreds of rain gardens to absorb artificially warmed runoff from paved spaces and keep it away from the river; and it is installing logjams intended to cause the river to hollow out its own bottom and create cooler pools for fish.

Karuk Wins Salmon Ad Case

Here is the opinion.

News coverage from Indianz:

The Karuk Tribe of California won its free-speech lawsuit over a salmon advertisement that was rejected by a a public transit agency in Oregon.

The tribe and an environmental group called Friends of the River wanted to place the Salmon for Savings ad on Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon (TriMet) buses. It was rejected because TriMet said it was not a commercial ad or a public service announcement. But Judge Henry C. Breithaupt of the Oregon Tax Court said the policy violated the U.S. and Oregon constitutions. The ad promotes the removal of dams in the Klamath River Basin to restore salmon runs.

Get the Story:
TriMet loses case over its ad rejection (The Oregonian 6/4)
Tax Court upholds tribe in lawsuit against Tri-Met (AP 6/3)
Press Release: Judge Rules Against TriMet in Free Speech Case over Klamath Dams Ad (IndyBay Media 6/3)

Related Stories:
Karuk Tribe sues over rejected salmon advertisement (2/21)

Klamath v. Pacificorp – Ninth Circuit Dismisses Treaty Claims

The Ninth Circuit refused to reverse a district court opinion finding no implied cause of action in the Klamath treaties for damages related to the Klamath River fishkills. The Court held without opinion that Skokomish Indian Tribe v. United States foreclosed the claim.

CA9 Memorandum

Judge Paez Concurrence

Continue reading

First DNR Inland Settlement Meeting

From the Soo Evening News:

Fisheries Chief Kelly Smith of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources indicated the fishing portion of the consent decree involved long and detailed discussion. The state was looking to protect fish stocks while at the same time minimizing the impact on licensed anglers and maintaining the current regulations. The tribes were looking to maximize harvest at peak times of efficiency utilizing spears and nets even during the spawning runs.

The tribes agreed to a permit system with notification requirements and timely harvest reporting. For its part, the state agreed to allow subsistence fishing activities even during spawning periods with certain restrictions designed to protect fish populations.

Walleyes, salmon and steelhead may all be taken by subsistence fishermen utilizing the tribal permit system with a variety of restrictions. They will be limited to somewhere between 5 and 10 percent of the walleye population in any given inland lake depending on acreage. Certain river systems leading into Big and Little Bay de Noc will also be open during the spawning run.

Smith observed the combination of sport anglers and subsistence fishermen should not exceed the 35 percent threshold required to maintain walleye populations on any given lake.

Steelhead and salmon will also be available to subsistence fishermen under the agreement with certain limitations again designed to protect brood stock in key areas.

Tribal members utilizing their own hunting permits will be allowed to harvest up to five deer a year with the season beginning the day after Labor Day and running into January. These permits will limit harvest to two antlered deer with only one allowed to be taken with a firearm before Nov. 1. The agreement also calls for a quiet period from Nov. 1-14, prohibiting the use of firearms for trial deer hunters.

Tribal regulations allow for the harvest of two turkey during the spring hunt and two more during the fall hunt. Migratory bird hunting will be governed by existing federal regulations with most other small game species unaddressed by the consent decree.

Bear hunters operating under tribal regulations will have the same start and end dates as Michigan hunters without any breaks. Tribal members will be entitled to up to 10 percent of the harvest within each bear management unit and that number can increase to 12.5 percent in the future if needed.

Tribal hunters are also guaranteed 10 percent of the state’s elk permits, but that can increase to 20 percent if the state issues less than 101 permits and more than 50.

Permits for both bear and elk will be transferable.

There were a number of questions from the audience following the DNR’s presentation including one member who asked if the tribe should be required to utilize the same equipment and techniques available at the time the treaty was signed.

“The courts have uniformly held that tribal members can use the same benefits of technology as non-tribal members,” answered Dobbins, meaning tribal members do not have any gear restrictions above and beyond the average sportsman.

Squaxin Island: 4th Annual Tribal Water Rights Conference – Climate Change: Impacts to Water, Fish, Cultures, Economies, and Rights

4th Annual Tribal Water Rights Conference – Climate Change: Impacts to Water, Fish, Cultures, Economies, and Rights

When:  October 24-25, 2007

Where:  Squaxin Island Tribe’s Little Creek Casino Resort, Shelton

Agenda and Registration:  http://www.wateradvocacy.org

The Center for Water Advocacy, the Squaxin Island Tribe, and the Indian Law Sections of the Washington and Oregon State Bars are sponsoring the Fourth Annual Northwest Tribal Water Rights Conference to take place at the Squaxin Island Tribe’s Little Creek Casino Resort in Shelton. The conference will address a broad range of areas relating to the impact of climate change on the reduction of stream flows and how such reductions impact tribal interests in the Pacific Northwest.

With your participation, we expect to create a regional dialogue to address an urgent need communicated by tribes to become more united in confronting global warming and protecting tribal fisheries, instream flows, treaty rights, and water quality. This year, we will focus not only on recent information suggesting that climate change is proceeding more rapidly than anticipated, but also on strategies for addressing these issues.

As part of the conference, please join us for a reception and complimentary refreshments hosted by the Squaxin Island Tribe on Wednesday, October 24, at the Squaxin Island Museum Library and Research Center in Shelton from 5:00-7:00 pm. We have invited Winona LaDuke, executive director of Honor the Earth, to be our special guest at the reception.

For questions regarding the conference, please contact: Terry Shepherd, conference coordinator, nepatalk@uci.net or 970-420-9148.

Cost:  $275

Approved for 9.5 CLE credits (includes 1.0 ethics)