Media reports and actions by the Salmon Recovery Council and the Puget Sound Partnership have suggested that the Skagit river system needs far greater attention in efforts to create more fish and salmon habitat. However, Skagit farmers, Skagit County and numerous partners have done remarkable work in restoring and creating new salmon habitat.

Save Family Farming has prepared this detailed white paper to help address this lack of information about these projects and the success they are enjoying. When the remarkable restoration work is seen, the question must be raised: why are those concerned about salmon, orcas and habitat uniquely focusing on the Skagit river system. This is an urgent question as many of the demands and prescriptions involve a significant loss of irreplaceable farmland. The Skagit Valley is one of the last remaining viable farming areas in Puget Sound. Continual loss of farms and farmland will reach a tipping point as many other once vital farming areas in Puget Sound already have. This is a precious resource worth protecting, as our salmon and orcas.

Solutions are at hand, as this paper shows. Win-win solutions such as the Skagit Delta Hydrodynamic Modeling project which prioritizes those projects that both protect fish and farms. Win-lose solutions, such as incorporated in the Puget Sound Partnership’s Resolution 2019-2, will harm farms without substantially improving fish recovery. Other measures, such as the consistent demand for drainage ditch buffers aren’t about fish at all. Farmers across the state and in the Skagit Valley are committed to environmental performance. Want examples: go to Skagit farmers have proven that commitment. Download, read and share this document for the details.

SKFF PSP Buffers Response