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In opposition to Snake River dam breaching

| March 1, 2024 7:00 AM

This is an abbreviated version of an article from the Rural Montana Electric Cooperative’s magazine, titled, “Snake River Dam’s secret Columbia River agreement filed despite co-op efforts.”

Gianforte, Tester, Daines, Rosendale and Zinke were opposed to the proposed agreement and were joined by others from Idaho who stated their opposition in a letter to Biden.

There was a petition with more than 22,000 signatures circulated by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, but the administration refused to budge and the agreement was filed on Dec. 14. 

The agreement was kept secret by the government prior to being made public in late November. The White House so closely guarded terms of the agreement that even Congress was prevented from viewing it until it was leaked, even though they have the authority over changes to the federal management of the Columbia River system, including dam breaching.

Consumers in the Northwest have paid for electricity produced by these dams for decades. If dependable carbon-free preference power produced by the dams is replaced by variable, expensive renewable power owned by out-of-state entities as stated in the agreement, power could cost up to 50% higher.

Studies show that risk of rolling blackouts in high-use periods such as extreme heat or cold would double in Montana.

The agreement stated replacement power would be clean, renewable, socially-just energy sources.

Did you get that, SOCIALLY-JUST energy?

Rod Delaney, Libby