The Columbia River flows through Revelstoke, B.C. On April 25 the province announced the renegotiation of the over 50 year old Columbia River Treaty (CRT) is slated to get underway this spring or summer. The CRT dictates the hydro-electric power generation of some 14 dams along the Columbia River. The province also announced a number of community meetings will be held across the basin in June. More details on those meetings are expected to be announced in May. (Jake Sherman/Revelstoke Review)

Renegotiation of Columbia River Treaty expected to begin this spring or summer

The province announced a number of community meetings on the subject will be held in June across the basin

The renegotiation of the Columbia River Treaty (CRT) is expected to get underway this “spring or summer,” the province announced on April 25.

The same day B.C. announced a series of public forums on the CRT will be held in basin communities this June.

The public forums will provide updates on the status of the renegotiation of the CRT, a discussion of the input received from those communities during a 2012/13 public consultation, and a summary of work the province and government of Canada have been doing to prepare for the negotiations.

“These meetings will relaunch the Province’s engagement with the public on the CRT,” reads a media release. “Indigenous Nations and Basin communities were not consulted with when the Treaty was first formed. It is a top priority for the Province to ensure they are engaged throughout this negotiation process.”

The meetings will take place in Revelstoke, Jaffray, Creston, Castlegar, Nelson, Valemount, Golden and Nakusp.

More details on the meetings and the status of the negotiations are expected to be announced in early May.

The U.S. State Department had previously announced the start of the negotiations would get underway early this year.

RELATED: Columbia River Treaty to be renegotiated in early 2018

The CRT was signed in 1961, ratified in 1964, and is set to expire in 2024. It controls the hydro electric operations of the 14 dams along the river and the storage reservoir levels that control power flow through turbines downstream.

The reservoirs behind Hugh Keenleyside in Castlegar, Duncan and Mica Dams store 15.5 million acres of water. During drought years Canada releases water to keep the U.S. turbines turning.

The creation of those reservoirs, dictated by the CRT, increased downstream power generation by about 1,000 megawatts, which is enough electricity to power a city about the size of Seattle.

As part of the treaty, in return for its role in increasing downstream power generation, the province of B.C. receives a “Canadian Entitlement” that sees the U.S. send the province about 250 million dollars worth of electricity every year.

Those “downstream benefits” are among the subjects up for renegotiation.

@Jnsherman
jake.sherman@revelstokereview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Creston after-school program in jeopardy

The Grizzly Bear Out of School Care program would have around 23 children registered in past years, but due to COVID-19, it’s been limited to 16 youth — the number required in order for the program to continue

A word from the new editor

Aaron Hemens is editor for the Creston Valley Advance

Creston’s second annual 7th Siding Film Festival to return next week

Organizers opened their doors to international filmmakers, resulting in 1,000 entries from around the world

Creston police report: Aug. 3 to 10

Local RCMP received 106 calls for assistance

Health care priorities debated following surprise funding announcement

Surprise provincial funding stirs debate on local health care priorities during regional meeting

Canucks ride momentum into NHL playoff series against defending Stanley Cup champs

PREVIEW: Vancouver opens against St. Louis on Wednesday

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

Lawsuit launched after Florida child handcuffed, booked and briefly jailed

Suit alleges “deliberate indifference” to what should have been handled as a behavioural issue

Russia approves vaccine, Putin hopes to begin mass production

Critic calls decision to proceed without thorough testing ‘dangerous and grossly immoral’

Most Read