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Virtual rally celebrates momentum behind removal of Klamath Dams

LeMonie Hutt became an advocate for dam removal when she was 8 years old after seeing her mom, a member of the Hoopa Valley Tribal Council, rehearsing a speech she was going to deliver to the State Water Resources Control Board.

“This inspired me to run to my room and write my own speech,” Hutt said.

Hutt presented that speech to the water board alongside her mother later that year. While the board thanked them for their testimony, the answer was clear: “The dams would not be taken down anytime soon.”

“Ever since then,” Hutt said, “I’ve dedicated my life to the advocacy of the Northern California rivers.”

The Arcata High School senior shared her experience of seeing the firsthand environmental destruction on the Hoopa Reservation caused by dams on both the Klamath and Trinity rivers at a virtual rally hosted by Save California Salmon on Thursday.

“I grew up with the Trinity River filled with toxic blue-green algae each summer,” Hutt said. “These are years we can never get back and must mourn, but still the future is bright because the rivers can heal themselves and more salmon will be able to spawn, which will help in creating a healthy river and, in turn, will help us both heal spiritually and physically.”...

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