Monthly Archives: August 2014

Long Lake Dam pays dividends to boaters, campers, wildlife

By Rick Landers
The Spokesman-Review

The 10 boat-in campsites completed this month at Lake Spokane are the most recent recreational benefits generated by the largest of six hydropower projects on the Spokane River. Read more

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EWEB could pull plug on Trail Bridge hydro plant

By Ken Engelman
Mckenzie River Reflections

MCKENZIE BRIDGE: Changes in the power market will likely impact plans for major upgrades at the Eugene Water & Electric Board’s Trail Bridge Dam. As part of an ongoing process to renew a federal license to operate the Carmen Smith hydropower facility, the utility had proposed building a screen at the dam to prevent downstream migrating fish from going through turbine blades. Because water levels in the reservoir formed by the dam fluctuate on a daily basis, the screen would be more complex than the blocking devices currently in use at EWEB’s other projects. Recent estimates put the price tag for a “floating” fish screen in the neighborhood of $45 million. Read more

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BOR and PacifiCorp agree to reservoir drawdown proposal

By Wire Report
Herald and News

The Bureau of Reclamation and PacifiCorp have announced that, due to the drought conditions being experienced in the Klamath Basin, PacifiCorp has agreed to a proposal which will allow flexibility in managing water currently stored in its Klamath River hydroelectric reservoirs. Read more

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Corps agrees to monitor dam pollution

By Nigel Duara, Associated Press
The Columbian

For the first time in its history, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will have to disclose the amount of pollutants its dams are sending into waterways in a groundbreaking legal settlement that could have broad implications for the Corps’ hundreds of dams nationwide.

The Corps announced in a settlement Monday that it will immediately notify the conservation group that filed the lawsuit of any oil spills among its eight dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers in Oregon and Washington.

The Corps also will apply to the Environmental Protection Agency for pollution permits, something the Corps has never done for the dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers. Read more

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Dilemma: Kill birds to save fish?

By Wire Report
The Spokesman Review

Dredging decades ago to aid Columbia River shippers also helped seabirds known as double-crested cormorants by creating a flat, sandy island ideal for nesting and feeding on young salmon and steelhead headed for the Pacific Ocean.

Now, the population of the cormorants on East Sand Island has burgeoned from about 100 breeding pairs to 14,900 of the pairs, and a federal agency wants to have thousands of the seabirds shot to protect the fish, including some that are protected and deemed endangered.

At a recent open house held by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the proposal, Tommy Huntington, of Cannon Beach, acknowledged that anglers feel strongly about fish runs being depleted but expressed consternation at the plan to shoot the birds. Read more 

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