According to results of a court-ordered Federal study:

Keep the Snake River dams.

Friday, the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) released the results of the Columbia River Systems Operations draft study, which in layman's terms, examined the role dams play on the Columbia and Snake Rivers, and whether they should be kept, or breached to supposedly improve fish flows. This highly anticipated report was said to go a LONG way towards setting policy in the next decades about the future of our important dams.

In a blow to controversial environmental groups, (and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown), the report says (in a nutshell):  Keep the dams.  Here's a very brief overview of what the report says, from the BPA:

  • The river’s navigation system is an important component of the regional economy, allowing farmers to export grain and other crops grown in interior parts of the United States to overseas markets. Cruise line operators also use the river for tourism, a growing business on the Columbia and Snake rivers.
  • The System is the source of economical, reliable and clean power generation and provides the region with some of the least greenhouse gas intensive electricity in the country. On average, the System produces 8,500 average megawatts of carbon-free power (equivalent to the power needs of eight cities the size of Seattle).
  • The Columbia River and its tributaries provide water for millions of people throughout the river basin. Farmers depend on System water to irrigate crops that contribute to the national economy.

This doesn't mean the effort to remove these and other dams by environmental groups will stop, but this will greatly bolster pro-clean energy efforts and support those who make decisions based on science and fact, not politics--to borrow a phrase from Rep. Dan Newhouse (R) WA.

To locate and see the actual report, click on the button below,