Last Sunday’s Conversation, “Swimming upstream to save a victim of the state’s water crisis,” asked the question: With the Delta smelt facing extinction, possibly in a year or two, should we do whatever it takes, at “whatever the cost” as the Endangered Species Act says, to keep the species alive?
Carrie Astorino – We’ve tried for years and spent millions of dollars to save these fish. It seems to be a losing battle. How can we continue to justify saving a little fish and sacrifice the livelihood of a farmer and his crops? When is it time to say enough?
Usha Paul Macgarvey – I accepted the smelt as a symbol for a balanced approach to water management; however, things are so far out of balance that I am prepared to let the poor smelt fend for itself. Sorry smelt, you’re on your own.
Kathy Allen – People seem to forget that a planet that can’t support natural species because of habitat destruction also can’t support humans. If we can’t save the smelt, we won’t be able to save ourselves.
Brian Tumminelli – We have put fish above farmers. We have put fish above people. It’s time to stop. The disastrous consequences are overstated, as they usually are when a species goes extinct. We cannot continue to live in a fantasy land where animals are more important than humans.
Dewey Luke – When you lose a part of the food chain, it could have an unforeseen disastrous chain reaction to the entire ecosystem.
W. Vern Leathers – Any species facing extinction needs special attention. When one species vanishes, it affects other species as well. The balance will be upset.
Payman Alemi – It’s time to give up the fight. The circumstances leading to the extinction of this species are way too complex for us to continue spending countless dollars and man-hours trying to save it. I support saving endangered species like rhinos and elephants that fall victim to poaching, but in this case, I say let nature run its course.
Kevin Knauss – Big Ag will only be happy when we dam the Delta at the Carquinez Strait and turn the Delta into a freshwater pool where nothing lives and there are no restrictions on pumping.
Janet Thew – We are such a selfish species. We are responsible for fixing the damage we do, and that includes damage to the fragile Delta. The smelt is an essential link in the food chain, and the law wisely requires that we address the big picture. This isn’t just about the smelt at all.