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(Klamath) Dam removal charge on bills
Herald and News 1/20/12
Pacific Power customers in Northern California are now paying a Klamath River dam removal surcharge on their power bills.
On Jan. 10, the company began applying the surcharge, about $1.61 monthly on an average residential bill, to 45,000 customers’ bills.
The surcharges will in part pay for removing four PacifiCorp owned hydroelectric dams from the Klamath River, per the conditions of the Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement, associated with the controversial Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement.
That agreement, known as KBRA, seeks to establish sustainable water supplies for irrigators, fund habitat restoration in the region, and help the Klamath Tribes acquire 92,000 acres of private timberland, the Mazama Tree Farm.
Both agreements hinge on dam removal; $200 million of the cost will come from PacifiCorp customers over 10 years, and the remaining cost will come from the state of California.
Oregon customers have been paying the surcharge since March 2010. The 550,000 affected ratepayers have contributed $26.7 million.
By 2020, when dam removal could begin, Oregon customers will have provided $184 million and California customers $16 million.
The money is kept in trust funds overseen by the Oregon and California Public Utilities commissions
Page Updated: Saturday January 21, 2012 03:34 AM Pacific
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