Isabelle Ross, Alaska's Energy Desk - Dillingham
Record summer heat that killed Kuskokwim salmon wiped out at least 100,000 fish in Bristol Bay, scientists say
July was the region’s hottest month on record, and in some rivers, that heat was lethal.
Herring fishermen, who come to Togiak from all over the state, still target herring for their tiny eggs, which once commanded steep prices in Japan. But not any more.
A proposed hydroelectric generator would produce an estimated 58,200 megawatt hours a year. That’s more than two-and-a-half times the region’s current energy needs of 23,000 mWh — enough power for the member communities to turn off their diesel generators most of the time.
The forecast for Bristol Bay reds is stronger than ever, but some worry about when the bubble bursts
The past few summers have seen enormous returns. At 62.3 million fish, 2018 broke the record for the bay’s largest run ever recorded. Biologists say that abundance won't last.