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 1/30/09 PRESS RELEASE from Gail Whitsett

                              !   URGENT  !


(Comments by Tuesday February 3, and come to Salem. The hearing for this bill (SB 76) will be next Tuesday Feb 3rd at 3 pm at the Oregon Capitol.  ALL citizens are urged to attend and provide written testimony regarding their feelings on the dams' removal.)

Senate Bill 76 is winding its way through the Oregon legislature next week and the electric ratepayers who will pay for the removal of Klamath dams need to be aware of the following report and estimated costs from the US government.  All dollar figures are from the FERC report noted below:

The estimated costs to 548,000 electric ratepayers for removal of the four dams on the Klamath River according to the FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission)

Report entitled

                          “Final Environmental Impact Statement for Hydropower Licensing

                            FERC/EIS – 0201 F Vol 1 Klamath Hydroelectric Project

                            FERC Project #2082-027 Appendices Vo. I (adjusted to 2006 dollars)

The high estimate of removal and disposal of 9000 acre feet of sediment from behind the dams is $4.5 billion.  This is equivalent to 1.5 million dump truck loads of sediment. The cost of this sediment mitigation (without liability for potential toxics) appears to be nearly $8000 PER ELECTRIC RATE PAYER. We can assume that the cost will be more in adjusted dollars at the time of dam(s) removal.

FERC states that ratepayers’ replacement of power will be an additional $35 million dollars PER YEAR to those same ratepayers. There are 548,000 electric ratepayers expected to shoulder this burden, 90 percent of whom are in Oregon.

The monetary cap proposed in the new Agreement in Principle does NOT include:

1.)    The cost of decommissioning (unhooking and moving the generators).

2.)     Cost of environmental and fish passage regulations until the dams are taken out.

3.)    Value of electric company un-depreciated assets (dam, equipment, etc).

These assets are undefined in the AIP and could be substantial.

PLEASE contact the members of the Oregon Senate Environment and Natural Resources Committee and request that Senate Bill 76 NOT PASS out of committee on February 3, 2009. Members are:

Chairman Jackie Dingfelder (D – Portland)  (503) 986-1723  sen.jackiedingfelder@state.or.us

Senator Jason Atkinson (R – Jackson and Josephine Counties) (503) 986-1702 sen.jasonatkinson@state.or.us

Senator Bryan Boquist (R – Central Willamette Valley) (503) 986-1712 sen.brianboquist@state.or.us

 Senator Mark Haas (D – northern Willamette Valley) (503) 986-1714 sen.markhaas@state.or.us

 Senator Floyd Prozanski (D – Eugene and Lane county) (503) 986-1704 sen.floydprozanski@state.or.us

If you want your letter to go in the record, it must have a signature.

The Senate office fax number is (503)986-1971 to send your testimony  regarding Oregon SB 76.  I apologize for the correction, we have new offices and a new number this session.  Please disregard the previous number.

Again, correct fax # (503)986-1971 or any of the committee members' fax #'s will achieve the same result.  If you send us faxed testimony, please e-mail us to make sure it arrived .


We recommend testimony that is to the point regarding specific issues surrounding dam removal (ie personal experience with the river, flooding, fish habitat destruction, your property rights, etc.) Any testimony is welcome.  Please sign and date.

Thank you for your attention.

Gail Whitsett

These five individuals will help decide if the ratepayers of the area will carry the burden of cost for the removal of the Klamath Dams through SB 76 to be heard in an open public hearing on February 3, 2009 in the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources in Salem, Oregon.

Everyone interested is urged to attend the hearing in person and bring written testimony or send the testimony by Feb 3, 2009 to the e-mail address provided to each member of the committee.


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