Idaho Examiner - Sen. Larry Craig News Releases

Monday, June 13, 2005

CRAIG REACTS TO SALMON DECISION

Will result in higher electricity rates, economic burden

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Idaho Senator Larry Craig expressed disappointment today with U.S. District Judge James Redden’s decision to increase the spill of water over eight dams on the lower Snake River and Columbia River, in an effort to boost salmon recovery. Water spilled over the dams does not pass through the turbine system, and therefore cannot generate electricity.
“Judge Redden’s decision will result in higher electricity prices and place an unjustified burden on the shoulders of ratepayers in the Northwest and the BPA,” Craig said. “Whether the increased amount of water spilled over will help boost salmon survival rates is inconclusive at best. The people of the Pacific Northwest deserve to have policy built on sound science, not speculation.

“At the same time,” Craig continued, “I am pleased that Judge Redden rejected the plaintiffs’ request to increase the flow rate of the river, which would have required devastating drawdowns from Idaho reservoirs in a time of extended drought.”

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