California commission recommends ripping out Klamath Dams
A Monday letter signed by California Energy Commission executive director B.B. Blevins asks the public utility commissions in each of the three states to authorize cost recovery only for decommissioning the four hydroelectric dams on the Klamath River. Indian tribes, fishermen and conservation groups want the dams removed to open up spawning habitat for struggling salmon runs.
"The Energy Commission has a responsibility not only to provide reliable energy supplies, but to provide for the environment," said Chris Tooker, an energy policy analyst for the California Energy Commission. "It takes that balancing mandate seriously. The whole reason we are involved in the Klamath issue is to help educate the participants."
PacifiCorp is seeking a new license to operate the J.C. Boyle, Copco 1, Copco 2 and Iron Gate dams on the Klamath for the next 30 to 50 years. Though the dams only produce enough power for 70,000 households, PacifiCorp says it's power that does not emit greenhouse gases.
The utility has said it would be willing to spend $300 million on fish ladders and other improvements to meet a federal mandate to provide salmon a way to reach hundreds of miles of spawning habitat blocked for the past century. It has also said it would be willing to remove the dams if their ratepayers don't have to pay for it.
The Oregon Public Utility Commission does not currently have a request before it from PacifiCorp to recover those costs, said spokesman Bob Valdez.
PacifiCorp spokeswoman Jan Mitchell said the letter appeared to be a rehash of an earlier analysis commissioned by the California Energy Commission, which a consultant to PacifiCorp found to contain errors and mistaken assumptions.
Based on studies done for the California Energy Commission, removing the dams would cost $38 million to $71 million, and 30 years of replacement power would cost $58 million to $153 million, Blevins wrote. That works out to an economic benefit to PacifiCorp ratepayers for removing the dams of $32 million to $286 million.
Blevins discounted PacifiCorp's argument that it wants to keep the dams because, unlike coal-fired plants, they do not produce greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.
He noted that the dams generate only 1 percent of PacifiCorp's power and replacing them with a wind farm or natural gas plant would cost about the same as upgrading the dams.
TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: California; US: Oregon
KEYWORDS: dams; klamath; pacificorp
It is like the baseline pricing....how to pass an illegal rate increase without anyone noticing.
THE STAND AT KLAMATH FALLS
How rural western farmers stood up to entrneched environmentalists and agencies of the Federal government and prevailed
The federally protected sucker depends on such wetlands, and the action represents a replumbing of a key section of the embattled federal water project in the agriculture-intense Klamath Basin.
“It’s a large, complicated project with extremely high expectations,” said Curt Mullis, field supervisor with the Klamath Falls office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “We’re hopeful and optimistic.”
The levees were built in the 1950s to convert rich bottomland soils into farmland and to channel the Williamson River directly into the Upper Klamath Lake. For half a century, farmers grew crops such as wheat, barley and alfalfa on great swaths of the drained land.
The levees’ destruction will come after 12 years of negotiations between interests that often have been at odds, including The Nature Conservancy, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, the Klamath Tribes and the electric utility PacifiCorp, which operates dams on the Klamath River.
We ain’t going to get to use it.
B.S. Zoology, '77
Envirofascist sleight of hand.
Kill the salmon!
No, Mr. Tooker, it's your job to make sure
Californians have sufficient supply of electricity for
their needs. It's the job of the California Fish and
Wildlife Department to deal with issues related to
environmental effects on wildlife. Just because you're a
frustrated zoology major doesn't give you the right to
abuse your authority!
...and they only power 77,000 homes with those dams, nothing much to worry about losing.
Sorry but the dam removal plan sounds idiotic to me.
These are the same assbites that will cheer every time alternative energy sources power one extra home, but they’ll gladly sign onto this plan.
These folks should be on medication for skitzophrenia.
We need power, and we need water. But who is stupid enough to give up those necessities in favor of a fish?
I will not comment because this is supposedly a family forum and I am not feeling very polite.
And say NO to their judges who empower them.
And say NO to the politicians who pander to them.
As a environmentalist...you want people to volunteer to give up their wasteful amount of electricity. If they won’t volunteer...you rig the poker game to go against the consumer. You start with taxes and fees...increasing the cost, hoping that this will be enough. Eventually, as dim as you are about economic matters, you the environmentalist find that higher costs won’t work. So then you slide into carbon fees or carbon credits...which work in the same manner...additional higher costs. The consumer doesn’t care. He simply pays more. So then you start looking for ways to stall electrical manufacturing. You deny new coal-fired plants and nuclear powered plants. When someone talks of a hydroelectric project...you deny them because that takes precious farm land. So as new projects fall to the side...the old plants come up for discussion. You deny them a chance to upgrade or repair...so eventually they will become issues and have to be torn down...leaving a gap in the grid.
The plan, you see....is very simple. It may take me 40 years to accomplish...but eventually...you will be forced to limit your consumption of power. I’ll decide your consumption level for you. I’ll do this because I’m more “wise” than you on the environment and electrical needs.
Of course, there is always the possibility that some country....like Canada or Mexico could ruin this plan...by manufacturing a dozen nuclear power plants or 40 coal-fired plants, and offer to sell you your necessary power...at twice or three times the current rate. They might laugh all the way to the bank as they take your cash.
The salmon have co-existed with the dams for a
hundred years but now all of a sudden they can't. Smells
like BS to me.
I noticed that.
Now it’s salmon?
I guess the suckers must be thriving at a consternating level at this time.
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