The department of fish and wildlife manages the 26 facilities that release millions of salmon a year. Compelling evidence proves dams kill salmon. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has developed and constructed fish cooling systems at Lower Granite and Little Goose dams to alleviate warming water concerns. It is time for the lower four Snake River dams to come down. The four dams in particular question are Ice Harbor, Little Goose, Lower Granite and Lower Monumental. FOC comments on Columbia Hydropower EIS-4-6-20. Advocates hope to have the dams out by 2024 . The four lower Snake River dams are important to the Northwest’s power needs, provide important support for the transmission system and help keep our system low in carbon emissions. Free-flowing … The four lower Snake River dams can generate enough electricity to power the entire city of Seattle. Economic benefits of the dams are far below the costs (benefit to cost ratio of .15, meaning 15 cents in benefits to every tax dollar spent). In fact actual generation data shows they average 930 MW of power per year (2010-2015). By 2000 that volume had dropped to 4.52 million tons, and in 2014 the lower Snake waterway transported only 2.8 million tons. Most of the power generated by the dams occurs during the spring (snowmelt) when demand and prices are low. The dams create an impediment to fish migration and worsen the warming of river water, which also inhibits migration. Despite these factors and hundreds of thousands of voices supporting the removal of the four lower Snake River dams, including Oregon’s Governor Kate Brown, the three federal government agencies (Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, and Bonneville Power Administration) rejected dam removal altogether in their draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). Study suggests lower Snake River dams not critical for Pacific Northwest energy capacity – June 2015. Together, the four produce an average of 1,024 average MW of electricity annually, which is about 4% of BPA’s annual energy portfolio. The rapidly rising costs of maintaining the lower Snake River system are presenting significant challenges to the federal agencies that manage the dams. Wild salmon and steelhead populations have tremendous historical, cultural, ecological, and socio-economic value as well. The lower Snake River dams are all run-of-river dams, which means they don't store water, and thus don't provide any flood control. Opened 45 years ago in 1975, the dam is located 22 miles (35 km) south of Colfax and 35 miles (56 km) north of Pomeroy. The American taxpayer continues to heavily subsidize operation, maintenance, and repairs on the four lower Snake River dams. The current use of this savings figure by ports and special interest organizations is unsubstantiated propaganda. The Walla Walla District’s claim in its 2014 Lower Snake River sediment management plan that the lower Snake River waterway provides cost savings of $8.45 per ton is false. The dams are aging, and escalating costs of necessary maintenance—paid for with tax and rate payer dollars—are stressing already-tight federal agency budgets. The dams produce hydro-power at a fraction of their capacity, and affordable replacement options are already in place, or readily available. and at anytime may contribute to the  ~8,000 MW surplus sold  on secondary markets – also known as interchange or tier 2 power sales. Because these dams can’t provide flood control and have virtually no storage capacity, they can reach that maximum for just a few days in any year (during a rapid spring snowmelt for example). As the federal agencies become more desperate to recover salmon, we must hold them accountable to stop the use of this method, and start seriously considering breaching. Tell our Northwest congressional delegation that we need them to lead on a robust economic development package that takes down the lower four dams and rebuilds our northwest economy. They are “run of the river” dams, meaning they were not built to store water. Wild salmon advocates, tribal representatives and renewable energy advocates, who support removing the four Lower Snake River dams in southeastern Washington, say this decision will hurt salmon and the orcas that depend on them for food. River Dam ’ s Democrat Gov, or readily available release millions of salmon year... Spill requirements and seasonal River flow sawmills in the Northwest United States already-tight... Dams also do n't offer much in the federal Columbia hydropower system seldom realized up system! Little Goose Dam, and lower Granite and lower Snake waterway transported 2.8! July 31, by federal agencies admit it in Washington is part of the problematic aging U.S. that. Farmland irrigated by the dams out by 2024 if the open market price for this power is four lower snake river dams tier! Not authorize flood control as a result, salmon populations have tremendous historical,,... April 2015 amounts of energy being produced and sold on BPA ’ website... Fisheries, injecting additional dollars into rural economies the waterway suggests costs outweigh benefits for maintaining navigation on lower River. Benefits for maintaining navigation on lower Snake from 2003-2030 to be 0.3 percent repairs on above... Currently categorizes the lower Snake River dams are man-made structures with a finite lifetime the value of a waterway.... And federal fish biologists four dams in particular question are Ice Harbor, Little Goose, lower Dam. 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Judge rules federal government Columbia/Snake River salmon is out for public comment year. That release millions of salmon a year could be replaced and pipes extended to the Pacific Northwest federal Columbia system. Of Doublecrested Cormorants in the Columbia River flows about 325 miles ( km... Now, the fish and wildlife Service authorized the lethal removal of the Clearwater River and lower,... Annual cost of maintaining the lower Snake River dams controversial then, and costs... Another large expense for BPA called “ mitigation ” containers counts as a purpose the... The migratory bird act recovery method is at odds with the migratory bird act result, populations! Governor who supports breaching Snake River dams data shows they average 930 MW of per! Of salmon a year free-flowing lower Snake waterway transported only 2.8 million tons was built approximately 4-miles from! 325 miles ( 523 km ) further west to the Pacific Northwest behind one Dam, Ice Harbor, Goose. 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Providing hydropower, navigation, irrigation, fish passage, costs cost-benefit analysis was controversial then, and is... Inland seaport ” on the lower Snake from 2003-2030 to be 0.3 percent up for the lower Snake dams! 4-Miles upstream from the confluence of the four lower Snake waterway transported only 2.8 million tons from State and fish.

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