An online journal of politics, policy, and society with a special focus on Maryland -- Contact: on_background at yahoo.com.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


An article in the Washington Post on Sunday details how a tribe of Native Americans in far northern California are leveraging evidence that their health is being damaged to try to get dams removed. The Karuks are arguing that dams, by destroying their traditional source of nutrition--salmon, are responsible for the "tribe's epidemic of obesity-related illness."

While this seems like a long-shot in the current political climate, it would be interesting if these health impacts gave a community leverage to protect their environment. One cannot help but be surprised that the argument that a private concern is hurting public health would be considered a "novel" approach to regulation.