A Big Reason to Avoid Diverting the Skagit: Earthquakes

A Big Reason to Avoid Diverting the Skagit: Earthquakes

We’ve taken a stand in strong opposition to the idea of cutting a channel from the Skagit River into the Barnaby Slough for the purpose of diverting river flow through the slough because it is fraught with so many negative possibilities. Great harm could be done to the homes and lands of our neighbors living and working immediately downstream if too much water were to flow southwestward across this table top flood plain.

By cutting a new channel from the Skagit into the Barnaby Slough, our exposure to flood risk is increased. The channel would create the possibility of much greater harm than now exists.

This website discusses some of the great concerns we have and we encourage visitors to read the various views shared here.

Lately, there’s been renewed discussion in newspapers and magazines about the possibility of a great earthquake in our region. A frightening article was published in New Yorker magazine this summer which is well worth reading.


The Seattle Times followed with this:


Naturally, we got to thinking about what a big earthquake might mean for us upriver in the Rockport area. Earthquakes have a huge effect on water, not just the ocean but rivers and groundwater as well. Earthquakes have been known to suddenly change the course of rivers like the Skagit.

This is just another smart reason to be very conservative about giving the Skagit River a reason to change its course here in the Rockport area. Channeling the Skagit through The Barnaby would increase flood risk in the event of a major earthquake.

We support the salmon habitat goals of our neighbor indian tribes but we strongly reject any project tactic or design action that increases our exposure to flood risk.

Here’s an informative Skagit County Emergency Management document on the topic of earthquakes:


 And, here is the Skagit County Emergency Preparedness site:

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