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Update on Columbia River System Operations EIS Scoping Comments

Columbia River System Operations EIS
Published March 31, 2017
Columbia River System Operations logo. In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, and Bonneville Power Administration, referred to as the Action Agencies, intend to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) on the Columbia River System operations and configurations for 14 federal projects in the interior Columbia Basin.

Columbia River System Operations logo. In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, and Bonneville Power Administration, referred to as the Action Agencies, intend to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) on the Columbia River System operations and configurations for 14 federal projects in the interior Columbia Basin.

More than 2,300 people attended a series of public meetings and webinars provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bonneville Power Administration, and the Bureau of Reclamation (Action Agencies) regarding the environmental impact statement (EIS) the Action Agencies are developing for the operations and maintenance of the Columbia River System (CRSO EIS).

The meetings were held throughout the Pacific Northwest from Oct 24, 2016 through Jan 9, 2017. The CRSO includes 14 federal dams and their related facilities located in the interior Columbia and Snake River Basins that are operated in a coordinated manner for multiple purposes.

During the four month public comment period, the Action Agencies urged members of the public to provide input on the scope of issues, potential effects, and range of alternatives to evaluate in the draft EIS. Together, the Action Agencies received 393,352 comments.

Some topics the public suggested for study include:

  • Dam breaching
  • Dam construction
  • Operational changes
  • Transportation analysis
  • Recreational opportunities
  • Replace hydropower generation with other sources of energy generation
  • Increase hydropower generation
  • Fish passage (non-structural)
  • Fish management actions

The Action Agencies are producing the CRSO EIS to fulfill our National Environmental Policy Act responsibilities. Once completed, the CRSO EIS will describe the impacts associated with the long-term future operation and configuration of the Columbia River System projects.

To ensure stakeholders and other members of the public are kept informed during the CRSO EIS process, the Action Agencies plan to provide periodic updates through newsletters, fact sheets and dynamic content to the www.crso.info website. A draft CRSO EIS is expected by early 2020. The final EIS is expected in 2021.


Contact
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
503-808-3710
or
Bureau of Reclamation
208-378-5020

Release no. 19-032

Contact Us

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Attn: CRSO EIS, P.O. Box 2870
Portland, OR 97208-2870
P: (800) 290-5033
Email: info@crso.info