Iowa Public Television


Providing Salmon Access in the River

posted on February 2, 2007

A utility company in the Pacific Northwest must take steps to help provide ways for salmon to swim past four hydroelectric dams on the Klamath River or risk losing its license renewal to produce electricity.

PacificCorp, which serves 1.6 million customers in six Western states, could opt to pay an estimated $300 million dollars to install fish ladders, turbine screens and fish bypasses or remove the dams.

A PacificCorp spokesperson said the utility is a long way from making a decision on removal of the dams and hopes a settlement can be reached with various agencies and other parties -- which include environmental groups, Indian tribes and commercial fishermen.

The river modifications were ordered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries. Under law, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the agency that awards power plant licenses, must incorporate those requirements in any licensing decision.

Tags: marine life news rivers salmon