Voices of Alaska: Future of wild salmon depends on decisions made today, by Commercial Fisherman Steve Harrison

emmonak salmonOur state is home to the nation’s last stronghold of wild salmon and, for the most part, we have managed our fisheries well. For generations Alaskans have sustainably harvested millions of wild salmon while this amazing fish continues to return to their native streams, spawn and rejuvenate the population every year. Tasked with developing policies that protect our salmon resource, the Alaska Board of Fish uses the basic principles of sustainable yield and conservative management to drive decision-making and, by-and-large, it has worked. But managing the harvest of salmon is only part of the equation. Ensuring our salmon runs remain strong also means protecting the habitat they depend on, from the wetlands at the headwaters of the streams they spawn all the way to the ocean where they spend the majority of their lives. In recent years, pressure to allow mining and damming interests to set up shop in and around our prolific salmon streams has increased greatly, with proposed projects like the Pebble Mine, Susitna dam, and the Chuitna Coal strip mine leading the charge. Read the rest here 17:15