A message from Tribal Council: Electron Dam settlement agreements mark progress

There were two important settlement agreements this week in the multi-pronged fight against Electron Hydro’s trashing of the environment. American Rivers and American Whitewater reached an agreement to settle their case under the Endangered Species Act, and Communities for a Healthy Bay and Puget Soundkeeper reached an agreement to settle their case under the Clean Water Act.

The Tribe is grateful for these organizations’ work and support in legal challenges addressing some of the many violations Electron has committed during operations and construction at the site. Once approved by a judge, the agreement to settle by American Rivers and American Whitewater under the ESA will require that the intake remain closed until Electron Hydro receives all authorizations under the Endangered Species Act preventing take of listed salmon species and culminates a case that was first filed in 2016. 

The agreement to settle reached by Communities for a Healthy Bay and Puget Soundkeeper, which is still subject to federal agency and court approval, ensures that if Electron ever opens their intake again they will apply for the appropriate permits to discharge water from the powerhouse.  

Additional legal battles against Electron continue, but each of the agreements this week is a good step forward in ensuring if the facility generates electricity in the future, it will do so in compliance with the law and, hopefully, not further harm salmon. The Tribe will continue the legal fight to correct or mitigate the damage Electron Hydro inflicted on the Tribe’s water, fish, wildlife, and other natural and cultural resources. There is still a lot of work to do to be sure that the damage from the turf, crumb rubber, and unpermitted rock dam is not only corrected and cleaned up, but will never be possible again.

Electron Hydro has still not been held accountable for the intentional acts that have hurt the Puyallup River, fish, and other wildlife. The Tribe will continue that fight for its Members, and everyone in Washington State, to be sure Electron Hydro is held accountable. 

haʔɫ kʷ(i) adsəslabcəbut. Watch over yourselves well.

Puyallup Tribal Council