FINAL EIS NOW AVAILABLE
The Columbia River System Operations Final Environmental Impact Statement is now available, following the consideration of the almost 59,000 comment letters on the draft EIS.
Public, agency and tribal comments helped to identify areas that needed clarity or correction, and new discussions in the document reflect public comments and the results of independent external peer review. The final EIS carries forward the Preferred Alternative identified in the February 2020 draft EIS, with an additional measure added as a result of Endangered Species Act consultations.
Input from across the region was critical to this process and the co-lead agencies addressed all substantive comments in Appendix T of the final EIS.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation and Bonneville Power Administration, as co-lead agencies, developed the document in response to the need to review and update management of the Columbia River System, including evaluating impacts to resources in the context of new information and changed conditions in the Columbia River Basin.
The EIS documents the review and discloses the environmental effects of taking an action, in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act. The action, referred to as the Preferred Alternative, is a suite of structural and operational measures that provide a balanced approach to operations, maintenance, and configuration of the Columbia River System, comprised of 14 federal dam and reservoir projects in Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington.
The co-lead agencies plan to release a joint record of decision in September 2020 that will document which alternative evaluated in the final EIS will be selected for implementation.