A PacifiCorp spokesperson announced Wednesday that Oregon and California governors and the U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell have agreed to remove the Pacific Northwest dams without waiting on approval from Congress.
Under the deal, a nonprofit corporation recently formed in California would take ownership of the hydroelectric dams and assume liability for any damage that stems from their removal, said Bob Gravely, a spokesman for Portland-based PacifiCorp.
The plan, which aims to remove the dams in 2020, still needs approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
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The collaborative initiative was put back on the table last month. OPB reported that “[over] the last four years, Congress has failed to pass legislation that emerged from nearly 10 years of negotiations over how to balance the needs of utilities, farmers, ranchers and Native American tribes in the basin.”