Thursday, August 23, 2007

Suit Claiming Dams Impede Tribal Religious Ceremonies Proceeds

A Northern District of California federal judge on Friday rejected a motion by PacifiCorp to dismiss the lawsuit filed against it by a number of plaintiffs including Yurok and Karuk Tribal members. The lawsuit seeks damages for toxic water conditions caused by PacifiCorp's dams on the Klamath River. The court also refused to delay the case while the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission completes long-running dam re-licensing proceedings. Plaintiffs allege, in part, that toxic blue-green algae thriving in reservoirs above the dams have seriously interfered with river-based tribal religious ceremonies. Yesterday's American Chronicle reports on the court's holding that the grant of a federal permit for the dams does not preclude the bringing of a nuisance claim against PacifiCorp.