Analyses Affirm Need for Action to Recover Abundant Columbia River Salmon

WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 12, 2022) — Two new analyses from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Department of Energy underscore the urgent need to restore abundant Northwest salmon and steelhead and deploy alternative power sources to the four lower Snake River dams. The National Wildlife Federation urged the White House and the Northwest congressional delegation to work together to find a way to breach the four lower Snake River dams, recover salmon, and make all of the stakeholders in the region, including farmers, whole.
“Salmon are essential for the Columbia River Basin’s thriving economy, wildlife, and way of life. These reports from the Biden Administration underscore that we need to find new sources of power for the region, meet our treaty obligations to Northwest Tribes, and recover salmon and steelhead before they go extinct,” said Mike Saccone, vice president of communications for the National Wildlife Federation. “Thank you to Chair Mallory and the Biden Administration for making it clear that the status quo is untenable and that we need to act to restore abundant Columbia River salmon.”
Since the completion of the four lower Snake River dams in 1975, the populations of Snake River salmon and steelhead have declined by at least 90 percent — undermining the Northwest communities, Tribes, and ecosystems that rely on these species. The impacts of these dams, magnified by the effects of climate change, are pushing salmon and steelhead to extinction.

Visit the National Wildlife Federation Media Center at


Get Involved

Where We Work

More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 52 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

Learn More
Regional Centers and Affiliates