As noted in their August 2 press release, Lummi Nation observes that Lummi Indians maintain the largest Native fishing fleet in the United States, and that Lummi fishers have worked in the Cherry Point fishery for thousands of years. Impairment of that crab, herring and salmon fishery by the proposed Gateway Pacific Terminal would thus violate the treaty between the United States Government and Lummi Nation. As noted in an article at San Juan Journal, Lummi leaders Jewell James and Jeremiah Julius intend to make these points known through a 1,500-mile totem journey from the Powder River Basin in Wyoming and Montana to the ancient Lummi village and burial ground at Cherry Point.
Tragic comedy best describes the political theatre of Pacific International Terminals and its hired guns for a coal export facility proposal in Washington state. Even before the environmental impact study has begun, the Gateway Pacific Terminal fiasco already comprises a three-act drama worthy of Shakespeare.
Caught in the act of illegally clearing a registered archaeological site containing an Indian village and burial ground in 2011, PIT in 2012 attempted to bribe the tribe with a multi-million dollar payoff in exchange for their treaty fishing rights and cultural heritage. When that failed, PIT hired the world’s largest public relations firm to stack the deck at public hearings on its slippery proposal by fiddling with the speaker allotment system. Recently exposed for publishing misleading advertisements, PIT’s mouthpieces have set the stage for its demented dream to go down in flames.
Value for money. PIT can buy mouthpieces, but it apparently can’t buy brains.
As Alexandra Morton reports at Common Ground, the Virology Journal in July published a scientific paper on the highly contagious European salmon virus now present in British Columbia. Closely matching the same virus in diseased Atlantic farmed salmon in Norway, the conclusion is that the Norwegian salmon aquaculture company Marine Harvest — which operates salmon farms in British Columbia — is responsible for introducing the deadly virus into wild Pacific salmon populations. Once home to robust wild salmon runs, the Fraser River abundance has plummeted. Given the virus severely damages salmon hearts, rendering them unable to swim up rivers to spawn, the once famous Fraser sockeye salmon migration route might soon be another natural resource wasted in the pursuit of greed.