Thursday, August 20, 2009

That Sound You Hear

... is the sound of the shit hitting the fan.

Seriously? The ADF&G sonar was off? AGAIN? And so some of the restrictions in place for king fishing on the Yukon might have been unnecessary? How can fisheries managers ever hope to have local people buy into the regulatory/management process if you shut them down unnecessarily? AGAIN?

Due to a lack of coffee, I can't remember the year this happened before. Was it 2000? Anyone have a better memory?

[The sound you can't hear right now is the one made when I hit my head against my desk.]

At least the ADN put this into context. The lower river villages didn't make any money, which means a tough time buying fuel oil for the winter, keeping the electric on, paying off the bills from the previous year. (Of course the middle and upper river villages don't have commercial fisheries, so commercial closures only mean more kings coming up river to them for subsistence.)

We're looking at a disaster here folks. Folks who played by the rules and did not fish for kings have to be angry. Summer chum don't make it that far up the river and aren't available to many villages. And the folks who counted on fall chum for their subsistence instead are now faced with the possibility that that run is going to be a disaster, too. Yukon villages are looking at very tough times this winter.

Hopefully, Parnell's administration will get on this immediately. When a chum crash hit hit the A-Y-K in the mid-90s, the Knowles administration declared a disaster. One of the saddest things I've witnessed in Alaska was that year, when donated frozen salmon fillets in plastic bags arrived and local people, subsistence fishers, walked away with their share of the donation.


TwoYaks said...

This is the talk around the office right now. There's been a lot of "you're /kidding/ me"s around here, and a few strings of expletives not reproducible in a civil blog.

Celia Harrison said...

My first thought was that they were lying about it. They had to say they made a mistake because the canadians were counting the number of fish which got through. Are they continuing to try and get the native people to leave their villages?

CabinDweller said...

Celia: I don't think they are lying. The state bureaucracy is not efficient enough to engineer a plan to try to empty the villages. (Which is why having a not particularly effective government is good sometimes, it can't do anything TOO bad too quickly.)