McMorris Rodgers Statement on Renewed Columbia River Treaty Negotiations

Nov 30, 2021
Clean Energy
Press

Washington, D.C. (November 30, 2021) – Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) today released the following statement after the announcement that the Biden administration will resume negotiations with Canada next month to modernize the Columbia River Treaty.

“Modernizing the Columbia River Treaty is critically important to protecting the Pacific Northwest from flood risks and ensuring Eastern Washington continues to lead the world with clean, renewable, reliable, and affordable hydropower. For too long, these negotiations were abandoned for the status quo, but I am pleased by President Biden’s willingness to hear our bipartisan concerns. While the decision to have a seat back down at the negotiating table was long overdue, it was the right one to make, and I look forward to American leadership stepping up and reaching an agreement that benefits our entire region in the 21st Century.”

NOTE: In June, Cathy led a bipartisan, bicameral letter of Pacific Northwest lawmakers to President Biden urging his administration to prioritize the renegotiation of the Columbia River Treaty and to provide regular, substantive updates to Congress on the status of its modernization. With the flood control provisions of this treaty set to expire in 2024, it is critical to find out what resources the Army Corps might need to alter its operations should the flood control agreement significantly change in the coming years. The lack of certainty provided by this outdated treaty raises serious concerns as it relates to mitigating flood control risks and expanding the use of hydropower, which provides more than 70% of Washington State’s energy.

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