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Council Draft Report Pegs 2010 Bonneville Power Fish, Wildlife Spending At $802.3 Million
Posted on Friday, June 10, 2011 (PST)

The Bonneville Power Administration’s fish and wildlife expenditures during 2010 came in at $802.3 million with more than half of that total for foregone revenues and power purchases, according to a draft report prepared by the Northwest Power and Conservation Council.

 

The “10th Annual Report to Northwest Governors” compiles fish and wildlife expenditure figures provided by BPA, which markets power generated in the federal Columbia-Snake river power system. Bonneville funds fish and wildlife actions to mitigate for impact of the hydro projects, including the NPCC’s Columbia River Fish and Wildlife program.

 

The Council is accepting public comments on the report. Comments are due by Friday, July 8.

 

The draft report for public review can be found at:

http://www.nwcouncil.org/library/2011/2011-04.pdf

 

The reported expenditures are as follows:

 

-- $199.6 million in direct (expense) NPCC Fish and Wildlife program expenditures, and capital investment commitments of $41.1 million.

 

-- $65 million in reimbursements to the federal Treasury for expenditures by the Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for investments in fish passage and fish production, including direct funding of operations and maintenance expenses of federal fish hatcheries (this category also includes $4.7 million, which is one half of the annual budget of the NPCC; Bonneville assigns the other half to its Power Business Line budget).

 

-- $123.5 million in interest, amortization, and depreciation costs (these are called “fixed

expenses”) of capital investments for facilities such as hatcheries, fish-passage facilities at dams, and some land purchases for fish and wildlife habitat.

 

-- $99.4 million in forgone hydropower sales revenue that results from dam operations that benefit fish but reduce hydropower generation.

 

-- $310.1 million in power purchases during periods when dam operations are partly aimed at protecting migrating fish, such as spilling water over dams in the spring or storing it behind dams in winter months in anticipation of required spring spills, reduce hydropower generation.

 

The Council was authorized in the Northwest Power Act of 1980 and approved by a vote of the legislatures of all four states. The governor of each state appoints two members to serve on the Council.

 

The Power Act contains three principal mandates for the Council to carry out:

-- Develop a 20-year electric power plan that will guarantee adequate and reliable energy at the lowest economic and environmental cost to the Northwest.

-- Develop a fish and wildlife program to protect and rebuild populations affected by hydropower development in the Columbia River Basin.

-- Conduct an extensive program to educate and involve the public in the Council's decision-making processes.

 

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