"While we don't accept the notion that the ambitious Black Rock reservoir proposal is dead simply because of the $6 billion-plus cost of building it, we would have to admit that it's at least on life support.
But as more concerns are raised about the project, they must not become simply an excuse to scuttle it, using cost alone as the deciding factor. Too much is at stake when it comes to solving the problems that a Black Rock would address.
The major players in this scenario -- irrigators, the Yakama Nation and those representing everyone else -- have to come to the table and work toward the greater good of the area.
We appreciate and respect the concerns the Yakama Nation has about the impact that drawing water from the Columbia would have on salmon, a vital part of the nation's history and culture.
But knowing salmon runs will never be what they were before the advent of large-scale fisheries and power-generating dams on the Columbia, there must now be room for compromise and vision that allows both fish enhancement and meeting future basin water needs.
We sense that compromise has been elusive largely because of dysfunctional tribal government in the past. That must change with the tribe's new generation of leaders. If the tribe questions the science of the interbasin transfer proposal, then it should document concerns and join in the planning phase of the search for answers."
Get the Story:
Editorial: Is Black Rock the answer? Despite cost, it may be
(The Yakima Herald-Republic 4/27)
Tribal spokesman voices concerns about Black Rock
(The Yakima Herald-Republic 4/23