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NW Fishletter #394, June 3, 2019

[13] Brief Mentions: Invasive Mussels, Willamette EIS, Klamath Dams

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will host several meetings to offer an overview of its National Environmental Policy Act review of the 13 dams and reservoirs in the Willamette Valley Project. The meetings will be from June 4 through June 13 in Eugene, Salem, Portland, Corvallis and Springfield. The agency is in the scoping stage and is accepting public comments until June 28 on the scope of issues to be evaluated in its environmental impact statement. Meetings involve short presentations and an open house format.

U.S. Secretary of Interior David Bernhardt sent a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on May 17 withdrawing the former support from his agency for the removal of four lower Klamath River dams. In October 2016, then-Secretary Sally Jewell wrote to FERC urging the approval of applications by PacifiCorp and the Klamath River Renewal Corp. that propose the transfer, decommissioning and removal of the dams. In his letter to FERC, Bernhardt says that the amended Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement did not require a submission from Interior, and withdrew the letter as "unnecessary."

The Northwest Power and Conservation Council released its proposed 2020 and 2021 budgets, both below a budget cap based on the forecast of firm power sales. The Council is proposing to spend just over $11.7 million in fiscal year 2020, and nearly $11.9 million in 2021. The Council's budget has grown at or less than the rate of inflation over the last 20 years, according to a May 8 presentation. Funding is provided by the Bonneville Power Administration from ratepayer revenues and is limited under the Northwest Power Act to a portion of power sales. Comments will be accepted until June 28.

Boat owners are invited to schedule a free inspection and decontamination of aquatic invasive species, such as quagga or zebra mussels, in Ephrata, Wash. The station will open June 1 at the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's parking lot, 1550 Alder St. NW. Trained WDFW staff use 140-degree water to power spray boats, trailers and other aquatic equipment, funded by a $285,000 grant from the state Recreation and Conservation Office. Appointments can be made at 1-888-WDFW-AIS. Washington also operates two mandatory watercraft check stations off Interstate 90 on the Idaho-Washington border, and on I-82 near the Washington-Oregon border. -K.C. Mehaffey

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NW Fishletter is produced by NewsData LLC.
Publisher/Editor-in-Chief: Mark Ohrenschall, Editor: K.C. Mehaffey
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