The mood was hope, anger, shock, disbelief and fear.
The Tractor Rally was held March 9, 2001 outside the Bureau of Reclamation’s offices near the Klamath Falls, OR airport. Hundreds of farmers and supporters had gathered for speakers and a parade of tractors, mobile farm equipment and support vehicles. The mood was hope, anger, shock, disbelief and fear. John Crawford, a Tulelake farmer, spoke at length on what may be coming. He predicted that there wasn’t enough water to satisfy the federal requirements for coho salmon and the Upper Klamath Lake sucker fish, let alone agriculture. His words echoed in my head as I videotaped the long somber procession of trucks and tractors that left the meeting and headed to Klamath Falls. A documentary had begun. This documentary’s last interview was with John Crawford in a Tulelake CA potato shed, August 2008.
The will and creativity of farmers to survive. We all need to eat.
Dr. Ken Rykbost, retired Superintendent of Oregon State University Klamath Experiment Station in Klamath Falls, talks about governmental public policy consequences, a little water history of Upper Klamath Lake and the will and creativity of farmers to survive. We all need to eat.
The Klamath Reclamation Project was denied water deliveries.
Dave Solem, manager of the Klamath Irrigation District, is at the “A” Canal headgate and fish screen in 2008 reflecting on what occurred at the original headgates in 2001. Here, for the first time in 97 years of operation, the Klamath Reclamation Project was denied water deliveries. Dave Solem is now manager of the South Columbia Basin Irrigation District in Pasco, Washington.
Farmers and tribes have to deal with these issues on a daily basis.
Dave Solem reflects on modern times at the rebuilt multi-million dollar “A” Canal headgates and fish screen. He makes the point that this construction project needs to pay off in some manner. How, and when, is unsure. Solem also looks back at 2001 and the media who came and left as did Federal managers and environmentalists. He states it is farmers and tribes that have to deal with these issues on a daily basis.
We need to stop paving over farmland, too much is being lost everyday.
John Crawford, Klamath Project irrigator, Tule Lake irrigator and potato farmer shares his thoughts on what can happen when bureaucrats interpert the Endangered Species Act. He also states that we need to stop paving over farmland, too much is being lost everyday, “don’t bite the hand that feeds you.”
©2013 Anders Tomlinson, all rights reserved.