Yurok chairman addresses congressional committee on climate change

WASHINGTON DC (KIEM)- Yurok chairman Joseph James was in Washington, DC Wednesday testifying about how the tribe can work with congress to address climate change.

James spoke before the US House of Representatives Subcommittee on Interior Environment and related Agencies.

His testimony focused on how the Yurok tribe is addressing current and future impacts of climate change on tribal lands. The tribal leader emphasized that implementing projects to prepare and adapting to climate change is more cost effective.

The Klamath river’s chinook salmon is the tribes most valued resource and tribal leaders say they are struggling because of the effect of climate change. For the past three years — the tribe has had to cancel its annual commercial fishery because of low salmon runs.

Tribal leaders said there is an urgent need for funding to bolster the tribe’s ability to perform fisheries and water quality restoration work.