the last salmonDespite The Nation magazine this month suggesting Alaska salmon in peril, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game says consumers need not worry about eating wild-caught fish from the 49th state.

Salmon runs in Alaska remain large, healthy and professionally managed, according to the state agency, and they are certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council, a global fisheries monitoring group. 

The Nation in a cover story suggested Alaska is down to “The Last Salmon” and declared that “Bristol Bay is one of Alaska’s few healthy salmon habitats.”

Alaska Commissioner of Fish and Game Doug Vincent-Lang pushed back against the latter claim in particular on Thursday.

“Alaska abounds in healthy habitat, which is evident from our abundance of numerous fish stocks and wildlife populations,” he said in a statement. “This the result of a robust and adaptive regulatory program that Alaska has in place that ensures sustainability of our fish and wildlife.

“As a result, on a sustained yield basis, we’re producing and harvesting more fish and game than ever before and are constitutionally mandated to keep that going for all future generations of Alaskans. The state’s right to manage was hard fought for at Statehood and it has paid off for all Alaskans.”

Aside from modern fish and wildlife management, there is no doubt the state’s fish and wildlife resources have also benefitted from a small human population and almost no development. The state has no major dams, less than half of a percent of the landmass tied up in agriculture, and a tiny timber industry. Those are the main activities blamed for degrading freshwater salmon habitat in British Columbia, Canada; Washington state, Oregon and California.

Real salmon struggles

Salmon runs in the former three areas, and especially in Canada’s Fraser River, are this year struggling but California is seeing an unusual bounty of the fish. “California Is Overflowing with Salmon,” the Wall Street Journal reported at the end of August. 

The California situation would appear to lend some credence to a paper written by a group of Canadian scientists suggesting the real issue with salmon survival is in the ocean where the fish spend most of their lives. That paper, which challenges some long-held views on salmon production, has been tied up in peer review for more than a year.

The Nation story parrots the view that freshwater habitat changes make salmon vulnerable to climate change along the West Coast, although there is no evidence to indicate Alaska habitat has been “increasingly challenged by climate change” as the Nation story asserts.

To date, if climate change has done anything to Alaska salmon, it has boosted the fish. Alaska salmon numbers have steadily increased as the North Pacific Ocean has warmed. More than 203 million salmon were harvested in Alaska this year, according to preliminary numbers from Fish and Game. 

That ranks the harvest as the eighth largest in an Alaska fishing history that dates back more than 120 years. The largest harvest on record was more than 280 million in 2013. Four of the eight largest harvests in history have come this decade, and all harvests over 200 million have come in the last 25 years.

Most telling are the increases in average, annual harvests in the decades since the end of the cold water years in the North Pacific Ocean in the 1970s.  From a ’70s era harvest of 48.3 million salmon per year on average, Alaska catches have risen to:

  • 122.4 million per year on average in the ’80s.
  • 157.5 million per year on average in the ’90s
  • 167.4 million per year on average in the 2000s.
  • And approximately 180 million per year on average for the 2010s.

Fisheries scientists fear that as the planet continues to warm salmon production in the North Pacific could begin to decline. Even barring climate change, some say, it is unrealistic to believe annual harvests can continue to increase at the current pace, and it is obvious the rate of increase has been slowing from more than 150 percent in the 1980s to about 8 percent between this decade and the previous.

Climate models predict Alaska could warm anywhere from two degrees to 20 degrees by 2100, according to the National Oceanic an Atmospheric Administration. The maximum warming would boost the average temperature in southern Alaska into the mid-60s. That is near the temperature of California today.

The models, however, predict increases in precipitation, which could help to buffer any warming effects on salmon. But the picture is complex. Many Alaska salmon rivers are glacially influenced and the disappearance of glaciers would significantly affect instream flows.

Almost anything could happen in the future, but in the here and now, there is no sign of downturns in Alaska salmon runs. The north Pacific, according to a widely accepted study by scientists Greg Ruggerone and James Irvive, today holds more salmon than ever. 

Heart attacks?

The Nation story hinted that the change in this trend might have begun with the unusually hot, dry summer of 2019 and the death of some salmon from heat stress in warm water. But such dieoffs have happened in unusually warm, dry summers for decades.

Risks of salmon deaths go up any time returns are large, as they were this year, and stream flows are low. The heat reduces the amount of oxygen water can hold, and if there are too many fish competing for air in oxygen-short water some fish suffocate.

“During the summer drought in the Southeastern part of Alaska,” the U.S. Geological Survey reported in 1991, “25,000 salmon died in eight streams due to low flows, warm water and lack of oxygen. Six of the eight fish kills were reported on Prince of Wales Island near Ketchikan.”

Lack of oxygen is the usual killer, but The Nation, echoing other media reports, pointed to a new form of death in observing that “hundreds of salmon perished in the lower Kuskokwim River, where water temperatures reached the 70s, before they’d had a chance to spawn. Scientists theorized the fish died from heart attacks caused by the heat.”

There is no evidence hundreds of salmon died from heart attacks, and there are no “scientists” (plural) theorizing deaths due to heart attacks. There was one state fisheries biologist who says his comments about salmon deaths were mischaracterized, and “it just never went away after the first misquote,” Fish and Game spokesman Rick Green said Thursday.

“I’ve been throwing water on that fire all year after the 8o, dead, prespawn chum in 160 river-miles started being characterized as a ‘massive die-off.'”

Scientists don’t know positively what killed those fish or others in the Koyukuk River, but the belief is lower oxygen levels in the water played a role.

“The biologist from Bethel regrets those remarks regarding heart attacks,” Ted Meyers, the state’s chief fishery pathologist said in an email. “Our and other scientists agreed that the fish mortalities were indeed caused by high water temperatures causing low dissolved oxygen when so many fish were present in low water flows. This scenario played out in several different watersheds.”

The salmon might have suffocated after they used up all the oxygen in the water, or they might have already been compromised by parasites or illnesses that weakened them enough that they could not survive the heat stress and low though not normally fatal oxygen declines.

Fish suffocating is an old story that goes back decades not only in Alaska but all across North America. After the drought of the 1930s, the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries declared, “eight states report a very serious situation with a loss of fish reaching disastrous proportions….

“There is a very general agreement that in addition to the loss of fish by stranding and suffocation, an additional drain will arise from the vulnerability of the fish in restricted pools and lowered lakes….”

Almost 90 years later, however, in the age of global warming, one summer’s drought leads to a declaration Alaska is down to its “last salmon.”












31 replies »

  1. I appreciate the article, but the author seems to be an Alaskan – Julia O’Malley, a current writer and editor at the Anchorage Daily News, and former Atwood Chair of Journalism at UAA. She normally does great work and writes compelling stories. One would think that with easy access to the Commissioner of Fish and Game in Anchorage that she would have interviews with the experts for this story. It’s one thing to have poorly informed stories about Alaska issue from Outside journalists, it’s another issue when it’s an Inside job.

  2. The only reason California is seeing record “returns” is that there are record amounts of Hatchery fish pumped into the ecosystem year after year …
    (Remember Patagonia’s Documentary? )
    “Among the team’s major findings are that approximately 2 billion Central Valley fall run Chinook salmon have been released in total from California’s hatcheries over time.”
    Just like Climate Change, the new “Hatchery Industrial Complex” will provide record incomes to shareholders but will leave many rural communities upstream in the dust.
    The Fraser River Valley in B.C. has been hit bad and many feel the bacteria from off shore fish farms is partially to blame…as is competition for food among record amounts of hatchery produced pink salmon in the ocean.
    What a mess…
    Luckily a plant based diet can supply humans with all the necessary nutrients they need for a healthy and thriving lifestyle.
    Glad there are folks thinking ahead as we see huge increases in see weed and algae farms throughout the world.

    • I’ve shifted to an egg-milk-fish diet, mainly whey and whey-isolate for protein. I’m surprised at how comfortable it’s become. It’s for health & fitness, not politics or ethics. I was raised almost exclusively on wild game for meat, and plenty of it, up until puberty, and with more favorable circumstances I plan to add back a modest portion of wild red meats, and others. See if it’s a benefit. But it’s now obvious that I can do fine – even subjectively – with zero red meat. I’m later-60s.

      Big problem with vegan, ovo-lacto diet statistics is reporting-errors. Some people claim what they wish, instead of what they are. But working to hold this aspect of misreporting down, is the somewhat surprising consideration that around 1/3rd to even half or more of practitioners are conservatives. Some of those conservatives are going to be religious (ideological), but most of the rest are in it for practical reasons, and mostly not for ideals or peers. I think Enviros, DEMs, LibProgs, and especially contemporary college kids – Greta is Watching! – tend more to be doing it for the crowd, and feel pressures.

      Could be an even larger problem that for many people of all groups, it’s a passing thing. Or an on-and-off thing. They were when they answered the Survey! But things change. This could be a pretty harsh statistic … potentially wildly changing what we think we know.

      Well … Judgement Day Cometh … dietary isotope analysis. Here’s a 2015 NCBI/PubMed paper: Stable Isotope Ratios as Biomarkers of Diet for Health Research. Abstract:

      Diet is a leading modifiable risk factor for chronic disease, but it remains difficult to measure accurately due to the error and bias inherent in self-reported methods of diet assessment. Consequently there is a pressing need for more objective biomarkers of diet for use in health research. The stable isotope ratios of light elements are a promising set of candidate biomarkers because they vary naturally and reproducibly among foods, and those variations are captured in molecules and tissues with high fidelity. Recent studies have identified valid isotopic measures of short and long-term sugar intake, meat intake, and fish intake in specific populations. …

      • Ted,
        Most westerners have been marketed a high protein diet by corporate intrests for many years.
        Truth is our bodies could live without animal protein just fine.
        Proteins must be broken down to amino acids and sugars before the cell can use them and after all we are just a few Trillion cells in the human body.
        I read a great story on a man who was the head of the potato growers association in America and he only ate spuds for 60 days.
        Some days he ate as many as 20 potatoes.
        His doctor compared blood samples before and after the experiment…
        The result was lower cholesterol levels and more favorable levels overall.
        Where many vegans and vegetarians go wrong is in low value carbs with butter, sugars and salt.
        Fruits and veggies with complex carbs from sources like Potatoes, Quinoa and Rice with a few added supplements like B12, Niacin and Algae provide all the essential vitamins and nutrients needed by man.
        I started my quest on the plant based diet over a year ago and honestly do not see myself going back.
        The unexpected benefit is the freedom in personal time from hunting and gathering animal protein year after year.
        Diet truly is one of the easiest lifestyle changes to make and one with the greatest health benefits as well.

      • Steve, are you saying fish is bad for you? One can’t go wrong with a well balanced diet to include meat and fish. The problem is man isn’t supoosed to be so lazy as we see today. If man worked, walked, foraged, labored 12-14hrs a day, both meat and fish would be required and beneficial to both brain and body development.

      • Bryan,
        Don’t worry…
        I would never tell you what to eat or how many hours a day to labor your life away.
        Nor, would I click on any of your FOX state news network links.
        I will offer up the fact that many large mammals do not eat dead flesh (and are still quite healthy).
        Like I said above …protein cannot even make it into our cells until it is broken down into simple sugars and amino acids.
        These two substances are readily available in many plant food sources.
        Examples include:
        Fruits, Nuts, seeds, legumes, leafy green veggies, mushrooms, soy beans, complex grains and seaweed.
        Your adult body needs WAY less daily protein then the FDA and USDA lead you (with help of agricultural industries) to believe.
        Many top athletes are vegans and some are even “Fruitatarians”…
        I would put them up against the average pork and dough boy any day of the week.

      • Steve,

        Care to share who these many top vegan athletes are and how they stack up against their competition? There are a few top athletes who may be vegan and a few more who are vegetarians. From what I’ve experienced most people who claim to be vegan are not in fact vegan.

      • Steve, when I grow 4 stomachs I’ll let you know. Foxnews is “State Run”? In time, in time, now that the kids are running the show.

      • Look up Scott jurak . Read his book . He was one of most competitive ultra marathoners in world. I would argue running ultras ,extreme lifting , or distance cycling is hard enough on muscles to need extra protein and put the animal protein hypothesis to test . Granted you would need thousands of athletes and a real scientist to analyze gut biomes , genes , effort , training, blood , mental status and long term results. 99% of current scientists are not close to qualified to determine exact results and set up a valid test . Long story short and of limited value- Scott Jerak book worth reading. He was burger scarfer , vegan , and vegetarian with absolutely incredible race results. He settled on vegetarianism I believe as most functional for him . Said it was a lot of work and not cheap . But he got the best performance results from it as far as races and times and disease resistance . He was pretty fast runner and could hit 5 minute miles towards end of very long races . Scientific evidence at this point indicates animal protein is not needed for grown humans . Personally I argue against that but my gut biome might be different than other folks . That’s why a real study has to take into account genes and biome . Everyone different. It’s an interesting subject and I admire vegetarians but I never want to be one . I don’t get the same primal feeling from eating broccoli as I do tearing into a good moose or dall sheep steak . The other unsaid thing is science is pointing to the fact plants may be sentient. Which causes a dilemma in the ethical vegetarian mind . Al orter was a great discus thrower who allegedly preferred plants . The problem is athletes tend to use anabolic steroids which helps with protein synthesis from marginal food sources so it’s tough to get accurate information.

      • How Cam Newton’s vegan diet may be hurting Panthers QB’s play and injury recovery

        Cam Newton is all over the news right now, with surprisingly serious articles exploring the vegan option among elite athletes. I see other pieces mentioning Jurak, discussed by Opinion above.

        This is about Business. Name-brand quarterbacks increase in value, the longer they last. Major broadcaster – who heavily influence the NFL – know that the known quarterback alone can sell the TV show. Of course, it’s serious business for Cam & others, themselves. NBA stars too.

        Performance-factors are more on the line for the more-heavily aerobic NBA players. NFL play action is too brief for the veggie-vegan endurance advantage to really kick in like it does for Jurak the marathoner, or Air “3% body fat” Jordan. (Jordan was maybe not veggie, but he was a Legendary “dietary machine”.)

        Doctors & trainers & staff sell veggie-vegan strategies to Team Management, and Players. So they have a Product to push, so Buyer Beware! But still, the advocates are either Professionals, or work closely with them, and Pro reputations & careers are on the line … they wouldn’t even frivolously or ‘religiously’ recommend these techniques, unless they thought it was at least a very good gamble.

        But it’s pretty clear what we have going on with Cam. He has made big changes, in a short time … there’s no way for him to vanish from view for a year or a few, as Hollywood and Political brand-names are known to do, to recharge & remake themselves. That makes it an unfair test-case for veganism. It’s so dramatic to make this kind of change ‘live’, that it may well be purposeful Reality TV. If so, it appears to be working!

        To do this yourself, you would take your time, ease into it gradually, test ideas, and not put yourself under heavy stress while making the big change.

      • Steve O,
        First off being Vegan does not mean that you do not eat any protein.
        You can do your own research, but like I said the body cannot use protein as a whole.
        It is broken down before it enters the bloodstream.
        Those components of Amnio Acids, simple sugars are available in many plant based foods.
        Nate Diaz is a top UFC fighter and has been Vegan ever since age 16.
        “Conor McGregor got his ass kicked by a vegan,” boasted UFC Welterweight fighter Nick Diaz via Twitter, three days after his baby brother Nate’s stunning submission win over UFC Featherweight Champion and Sports Illustrated cover boy Conor McGregor. 
        There are several champion body builders like Torre Washington who is a 7 time champion and vegan along with ultra marathon runner Michael Arnstein (who only eats fruit).
        The fact of the matter is most humans eat too much meat and grow fat from excess protein.
        High amounts of animal protein also cause a whole slough of health problems from coronary artery disease all the way to colon cancer.
        A diet based on high fiber with a variety of plant based fruits, veggies, legumes and grains is far superior to the “standard America diet” also know as SAD.

      • “vegan bodybuilders have fuelled themselves effectively on a vegan diet.
        Winning titles in various different categories, they have excelled in traditional categories such as classic bodybuilding as well as figure, physique and fitness. 
        They have years of veganism between them. Proving they can obtain not only the protein but also essential minerals from plant sources, they have caused other competitors to reconsider their nutrition.”

      • Steve,

        Where did I, or anyone else for that matter, say that being Vegan meant that you do not eat any protein? Sometimes I honestly have no idea what you are reading and commenting on, but frequently it isn’t on subject and you frequently read things that aren’t there.

        As to your many top athletes comment I think it’s safe to say that the following words describe the total number of top vegan athletes more appropriately: a few, some, a minority, a handful, not many. You should celebrate that any top athletes claim to be vegan, I’m doubtful they actually are true vegans since most true vegans are sickly and are unable to consume the amount of energy required to perform at top levels of any athletic performance, especially for any prolonged period of time…year in and year out.

        There is nothing wrong with eating vegetables when done as part of a healthy diet, but when people exclude healthy foods problems happen. There are countless stories of veganism leading to all kinds of health issues.

      • Steve O,
        Sorry I thought the whole debate was settled around Vegans not getting enough protein.
        If you understand the nutrients needed and understand they are readily available in plant based diets, then why would you make a statement like:
        “I’m doubtful they actually are true vegans since most true vegans are sickly and are unable to consume the amount of energy required to perform at top levels of any athletic performance, especially for any prolonged period of time…”
        Talk about off the wall comments.
        I am no professional athlete, but I can tell you there are ample amounts of energy from raw foods and a Vegan diet.
        I have followed a plant based diet over the last year and have felt better than in the last several years.
        My exercise habits did not suffer, but performance improved.
        You logic is so bizarre…
        If all the necessary nutrients are available in a plant based diet, then how could you be so “sickly”?
        Believe what you want…
        No one is coming for your steak.

      • Steve o , I hate defending something I don’t even like – vegan . I suggest you dig in and do some serious research. You are usually so on the ball with your knowledge! Vegans vegetarians ect is a completely healthy diet ! There are more protective nutrients in plants than can be listed and totally put meat fish ect to shame though they are finding special performance enhancers within meat ( I can’t remember them all but plants may also provide just not in one package) . Your statement vegans can’t get enough calories to be athletes is a touch funny . Just think corn or vegetable oil and it’s calorie ratio per pound it outdoes protein hands down . Think the Atkins diet they use protein to loose weight has very low calories per pound even when moderate animal fat is left in the meat . People get fat on carbs because they digest easy and fast plus if a person doesn’t keep moving they change to sugar then fat or some such . So for info brown rice and beans somehow makes an alleged complete protein. Fricken caribou survive as great runners on a diet of lichen . Yes their system is different I know but you get the picture. Looked at our teeth style recently?? Looks like a darn fruit or vegetable eater . Scott jurak was a documented vegan for a time . He spent massive time running, working, and cooking/ prepping food . An athletic vegan has to be very dedicated to preparing food and educated in what foods make a balance with variety for correct nutrition . I guess shopping takes a lot of time . Some athletes even subscribe to the raw diet . Now I guess that’s a literal pain in the ass I’m told . Look up the tar humarjah runners from somewhere in Mexico or Central America. They were pretty impressive. I don’t think they were strict vegetarians but close by accident and when the traveled long distance it was a zero meat diet . Now you mentioned disasters from vegans – that’s a logical fallacy issue. Because- dramatic accidents make the news – success does not to same degree and how would you quantify a vegans success? The second reason is as we know it’s not what you have it’s how you use it . Which means those vegans were not doing their job of a balanced vegan diet!!! That said if you had argued it’s impractical to be a vegan – aparently you would be 100% correct for most humans. Two interesting side notes which I’m sure you know – sugar and foreign chemicals are the dangerous element in diet not meat or fish. Another interesting side note is if you feed cows a grass diet it’s prooven to change the omega cholesterol balance to a neutral or positive balance. What the animal eats is evidently what makes the difference. That’s why wild salmon by far trump farm salmon. Creates a different balance and nutrient qoata within the fish ! Plants ! They do a body good !!!! Now pass me the steak and liver ! Promote vegan so there is more meat for rest of us !

      • Quinoa has about 8 grams of protein per serving or 185 grams, wild salmon has about 39 grams of protien for 154 grams, and venison has about 36 grams of protein for 168 grams. That means you need about 5 times as much quinoa to equal the same amount of protein in wild salmon or venison. 5 cups of quinoa or about 6 ounces of wild salmon or venison…

        There are very few top athletes on a true vegan diet because they don’t have all day to process that much quinoa.

      • Plant vs Animal Proteins – 3 things

        1.) Plant protein is usually “incomplete”. A given protein source lacks certain of the “9 Essential Amino Acids”, which humans are incapable of making internally. Complicating the 9EAA holy grail, is that some of the AAs that we can make, we don’t make all that well, and clearly benefit from external sources. For optimal results, ‘gray area’ AAs cannot be overlooked. For average outcomes (survival), we can pretty much ‘get away with’ casually combining Beans & Grains – so-called Complimentary Protein Sources. To actually know what you’re doing, though, and to achieve a design-goal, is definitely junior rocket science, at least.

        2.) There is also the Protein Quality issue. This is much more ‘meaningful’ in the ways that really count, that really matter to us, than a simple 0.84 versus 0.72 efficiency ratios comparison would suggest. No, organisms relying too much on lower Protein Quality sources simply do not “thrive” like they would with the high-quality equivalent. Survive, yeah; elite, fergitaboutit.

        The industrial fryer chicken producer will go broke, trying to cut corners on PQ (too much soy, etc). True, the adverse affects of lower PQ are most pronounced, during infant & juvenile growth phases. But when we’re talking body-building, athletic fitness improvement, recovery (from both macro-injuries & from normal training-effects (which are a form of injury)), we’re talking much the same underlying physiology that drives early growth. Body-builders and line-backers say they are working to “grow”, and that is not a misnomer.

        Soy and quinoa both provide nominally complete protein. Both have limits on the amount that be included in the diet. Soy simply does not work as well as it should, for several separate reasons. Plus your friends might shun you. Quinoa is tasty, trendy, your friends approve, but it’s coated with saponin. You rinse off ‘most’ of it, but sensibly only a small portion can be consumed without adverse side-effects. (If you’re having trouble getting the hoped-for outcome on a quinoa diet … yeah, we know why.)

        You can buy specially-processed soy and quinoa, and they are an improvement, and there are other higher-end consumer options. Do your research, multiply your protein-budget by 5-10-20 times … and it’s still not what you’ll see by adding a little salmon or chicken.

        3.) Athletes cheat a lot. Get real. It’s endemic in the culture. Junior High kids are already past-masters at the cheat-codes … and they fully internalize this behavior. It’s no different to them than doing everything you can to reduce your Taxes (if you make real money).

        A little bit of cheating in a vegan diet will go a very long ways. The ‘magic’ of animal meats requires only a small supplement. We know this from the fryer-producer, cattle feedlots and industrial hog farms. It only takes a modest amount, but you cannot achieve the best results economically, without it.

        The pure vegan route may not be impossible, but it does take serious – uncommon – resources. Money, work & talent. Web pages full of pretty bodies all claiming to be vegan, require Testing. Proof. You can’t claim to bench #250, or run a marathon in 5 hours, without demonstrating it. Testing is coming, but it’s not ‘on the ground’ yet. Meanwhile, don’t think that because others claim they did it a certain way, that it’s legit, and therefore you can do it that way too. Work for your goals, but don’t be a fool.

      • Opinion,
        We rarely agree, but I must say you are really thinking this one out.
        You said:
        “Looked at our teeth style recently??
        Looks like a darn fruit or vegetable eater .”
        Many natural doctors state the exact same thing…humans evolved from near the equator where lots of fruit sources were available for us to eat.
        The are also easier to digest and excrete which all takes energy.
        You are also correct:
        “Fricken caribou survive as great runners on a diet of lichen .” 
        Not too mention that moose grow to over 1,200 lbs on willow leafs?
        Another very strong Vegetarian Athlete is the U.S. Climber Alex Honnold.
        His recent accomplishments include the first ever solo ascent of El Cap along with setting a new speed record of less than 3 hours to climb the 3,000 foot rock face.
        He also climbed the 3 largest formations in the Valley (el cap, half dome and mt
        Watkins) in a 30 hour push (non stop).
        Alex has also led many great routes in the Ruth Gorge of the Alaskan Range.
        His diet would be considered vegan if it was not for the mac and cheese he loves.
        Thanks for thinking the logic through and understanding the science behind nutrition.

      • So it seems like we can all agree that eating vegetables isn’t a problem as long as you aren’t allergic to the veggies you are eating. Opinion and Ted both mentioned one possible sometimes vegan top athlete and Steve mentioned 3 or maybe 4 possible sometimes vegan top athletes. If there are many top athletes who were actually vegan why are they hiding it?

        Humans are not caribou or moose and our digestive systems work completely differently, there is no reason to compare their food and life cycle to ours. It’s as silly as comparing a dung bettles diet to ours.

        I am not opposed to eating fruits and vegetables, it might surprise some of you, but I actually eat them myself. Quinoa is not as dense in protein as wild salmon or venison, in fact it has about 5 times less.

    • Steve S.,

      In past days, the government & schools were the lead marketers … they taught us these big, pretty Food Pyramid posters (And they were really very nice art-work! Cost-plus gov contracts, ya know. I bet they can be turned up somewhere on the ‘net.), which showed that you should be eating so many portions/servings from each of these major food groups … each the product of Farm Lobbies that put today’s corporate-marketeers to shame.

      You know – milk is a food group, cheese is another one, ice cream is a group … steak, pork, hamburger and bacon are all separate food groups … even as a little tyke – still learning arithmetic – I could add that up to fattened-up & ready-to-butcher in nothing flat.

      But then they went overboard the other way, Steve. And social groups have picked up on making certain food groups Scapegoats. Not just sensible Take is easy on that stuff, or A little bit of that will do you, or Once a week is plenty – no, now the message becomes Those foods are poison, or just flat-out evil, which is, ahem, baloney.

      Where many vegans and vegetarians go wrong is in low value carbs with butter, sugars and salt.

      Although it is always hard to change one’s existing eating-pattern, it does look like veggie-vegan folks are running into a special ‘compensation problem’. The butter and vegetable-spread is bad, but the sheer quantity of sucrose is getting to be a real worry. Essentially, too many younger, slender people are living on sugar.

      More sugar is always more-better, but it does seem like a little animal-fat helps hold the sweet-tooth it in check.

      Seventh Day Adventists are big on vegetarianism, as a main part of their religious claim-to-fame. I grew up with 7th Day people … but you see, their boy my age milked the cow, they separated cream and made butter, and drank whole milk. Plus eggs. They went light on sugar, and meals did not feature sugary dessert dishes … yet everyone was healthy, happy & stable. And they still are.

      I’ve tried full-on veganism, which is relatively easy for me, because I accept & enjoy soy beans. It’s harder to find the variety of soy-products today, because of induced consumer hostility. You may as pull out a MAGA hat and put it on in the store, as inquire about soy foods. Which is unfortunate.

      The SDAs had meat-analogs, mainly soy-based, when I was a little kid, and they’d had them for several generations. They invented & developed the industry. “What’s soy beans?” I asked. “They’re a bean, with all the protein that’s in meat … but they don’t grow here”.

      Well … I grew soy here, right next to the Pacific Northwest water. I’d sure like to have a garden again. Fiskeby V, developed at the Swedish ag-station at the town of Fiskeby. Soy needs a dark period at night, to flower properly. They grow ok in AK, but don’t set fruit right.

      Fiskeby, however, is at the latitude of Juneau and Kodiak.

  3. Ah yes, The Nation Magazine: As of 2019, The Nation self-describes with the following statement: “We argue that dissent is patriotic and we hold the powerful to account, no matter their political persuasion. We raise up the promise of a radical tomorrow while we agitate for meaningful change today. Above all, we aspire to galvanize a more informed public—one equipped with a more profound understanding of events, ideas, and history.”
    “No matter their political persuasion”. Ya, sure… I think with the Russian and Ukranian hoax of Democrats are saying it, then the opposite is true.

    • it’s a noble mission statement, Byran. the founders of this country would have embraced it. but saying things is easier than living them. the article didn’t inform; it misled.

      it didn’t teach anyone about history. it attempted to alter history to support an agenda.

      maybe worst of all, it painted as victim – or tried to paint as a potential victim – someone with multiple airplanes, multiple homes, and family money. if only everyone in the Bay was as well off as Anna Hoover-Clark.

      many Bay residents would, i’m sure, be happy to just make do with her other home:

      but i’d guess the story was more mistake than plan. what does an editor based in London working for a New York magazine know about Bristol Bay, let alone Alaska, other than it is a far off place imperiled by climate change?

      The Nation got sold a story and bought it. clearly the magazine no longer employs fact-checkers.

  4. Total bs about dying salmon. I think the biolgist was misquoted as to the 70degree water or read their thermometer wrong . I’m guessing that will be hard to find record of . Unless you are measuring from near a geo thermal source . I’ve never experienced 7o degree creeks in that area of Alaska . As Craig would say – doesn’t pass the sniff test. Now as to pebble- trump and his cronies should stay the double heck out of it . It’s a state issue. A large foreign mining conglomerate wants to extract Alaska’s minerals for their own profit. They are not here to benefit Alaska . The state would get next to nothing and give away one of the worlds biggest gold and valueable mineral deposits in a non war zone . Huge risk for Alaska , it’s water ways and fish . Next to nothing in return. When Alaska changes its laws to profit from mineral extraction like they do from oil then and only then should it be considered. Until then it’s mathematically proovable to be a very bad idea for Alaska to let go of its wealth that’s in The safest banks of America . The state stream bank !

    • I was completely stuck at the 70 degree claim. At that point credibility of article would go out the window as even in the temps we had this summer I doubt any waterway got near that. More koolaid.

  5. We read on The Nation cover-image at the top of this post:


    Bristol Bay is one of Alaska’s few healthy salmon habitats. Can it survive the twin threats of a rapidly changing climate and a massive Trump-backed mine?

    (Emphasis added. The article itself is not yet available, without a subscription.)

    It’s about the Pebble mine project. Which is being played as another round of the ANWR ‘National Park’ game, to paint Western Alaska development as breaking the Rules.

    And that’s about a political interest group continuing a long-running effort to hijack State & local powers spelled out in the Constitution. The City, trying to claim hinterland jurisdictions as their own Cathedral.

    … So like attacking guns & Bibles, they don’t have a legitimate leg to stand on.

    Preservationists got plenty of Alaska already, and then some. But they’re not happy with that, because of course their real aim is that basket of deplorables who have different opinions than their own.

  6. Well according to CNN there are starving bears in Canada because wild salmon populations are dying off all due to anthropogenic global warming, they even have pictures of emaciated bears to prove it all. How exactly emaciated bears prove anthropogenic global warming is a stretch since emaciated bears have been around as long as bears have roamed this earth. But heartbreaking pictures elicit an emotional response and since emotional responses are how true believers form their opinions the more heartbreaking the pictures the better, facts be damned.

    “The heartbreaking images, captured by a Canadian photographer, have sparked concern from wildlife observers. They worry whether the bear and two cubs will even make it through hibernation.
    It also shines light on another victim of the climate crisis and the depletion of wild salmon population.”

  7. Listen, I know Alaska this or that, salmon this or salmon that. All these references to “Doom and gloom” come down to “Climate Change or Global Warming” in one form or another.
    All one has to do is look at the frauds pushing it. What do the biggest frauds in “Global Warming” have in common? Oil and Gas!!!! Steve Stine, I think you mean well but you follow and take advice from crooks.
    What does Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, John Kerry all have in common? Their sons all have “jobs” making millions Ukrainian Co2, Greenhouse producing, “Global Warming, pilo and gas companies..Not to mention Ukraine being the #1 sponsor of the crooked Clinton Foundation.
    So, with all that said, some here will ignore this and that is fine but, think about it when those same crooks make Alaskan policy based off fraud and Socialist lies. Oh, I know, impeach “Orange man”. March on!!

    • Update 2: Just as we anticipated, the woman who confronted AOC at her town hall in Corona was, in fact, a plant sent by a pro-Trump group.

      According to Gizmodo, the ‘let’s eat the babies’ woman has ties to LaRouche PAC, a right-wing group that supports President Trump. The group was founded by former Communist Lyndon LaRouche. LaRouche, who died earlier this year at the age of 96, was one of the original American political provocateurs.

      LaRouche’s followers took credit for the prank in a Tweet Thursday night, claiming that “sometimes, only satire works.”

      It was us. Malthusianism isn’t new, Jonathan Swift knew that. Sometimes, only satire works.
      — Lyndon LaRouche PAC (@larouchepac) October 4, 2019

      • Marlin, I hope you are right and the sane people of our country are calling the insane people out.

        Have you heard that crazy 16yo Gretta something in her rant about no more children? You know, the girls that came over on a $5 million solar powered sailboat (whatever that is), while her crew all flew commercial. Ha

        How about this other looney Swede? Swedish professor, Magnus Soderlund, who recommended on Swedish television that we eat human flesh to help prevent global warming.

        It’s too bad he’s Swedish as he’d might fit right in with the 2020 Democrats who are running for the presidency. The Swedish professor stated that he would understand initial negative reaction to eating human flesh and suggested that we first do a “taste test” to see how we like it before we condemn the idea. Where do I sign up?

        While this may be the most repulsive idea I’ve heard yet, Bernie Sanders was not too far behind in offering his sick solution. Socialist Bernie advocated mass abortions worldwide, especially in countries with a lot of poverty and all paid for by the United States.

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