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Bob Larson Puget Sound Nearshore Project & Impact on Farms Pt 1
by Bob Larson, click here for bio

Program: Washington State Farm Bureau Report
Date: August 23, 2017

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I’m Bob Larson. Farmers in Whatcom, Skagit and Jefferson counties could lose hundreds of acres of prime land in the name of salmon recovery.

The Army Corps of Engineers and State Fish and Wildlife have been studying the Puget Sound Nearshore Ecological Project, or PSNERP, that would remove upstream dikes, flooding farm land below …

TOM DAVIS … “The one in Whatcom and the one in Skagit both take out, not just farm ground, but it is really prime farm land, and in Whatcom it’s land that can’t be replaced. It’s prime potato seed crop area that has been set aside, in state law, for that purpose.”

That’s Tom Davis with the Washington Farm Bureau …

TOM DAVIS … “It’s actually a restricted area, established in state law, that protects it as an area that’s for production of the potato crop industry in Washington. It can’t be just moved to another part of the county, and yet that’s what it says in the chief’s report, the final PSNERP report that was approved and then sent to Congress.”

Davis says it would be a serious hit for farmers …

TOM DAVIS … “What it shows us is, ya know these folks might be good fish biologists, but they don’t know a thing about agriculture. So our concern is, it’s going to take out prime farm ground, it’s going to destroy the livelihoods of family farmers. And in the end it will have an economic impact to these rural communities where ag is king.”

And to top it off, Davis says the impacted farmers were rarely if ever consulted. We’ll tell you about that and more tomorrow.

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